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MPA Reaches Out

Area students are being given the opportunity to learn about nature through art as a part of the McLean Project for the Art’s Art Reach program. Elementary school students are touring the current exhibit at the Emerson Gallery, called Two Natures, to learn about the natural word through the eyes of artists.

“A couple times a year there’s an exhibit that ties in with SOL,” said MPA’s Dabney Courtina. “They get to talk about what this art is then tie it into what they’re learning.”

After touring the exhibit the children “act out the nature cycles of plants,” said Nancy Perry, the executive director of MPA. “The kids get to do a skit on photosynthesis with props. It’s cute, nothing big but they love it,” said Courtina. Students also have a chance to sketch out their ideas on what nature is after the tour of the exhibit.

“What makes this unique is that we get to target Excel programs for at-risk schools. We pay for bussing and all the stuff so they don’t have to pay. So many of these kids have never been in a gallery before,” said Courtina.

“We have about 2,000 kids that will come through here. We’re doing two tours a day of about 120 kids a day,” said Perry.

Two Natures is currently on exhibit at the Emerson Gallery in the McLean Community Center. The exhibit features the work of a local husband and wife team who produce independent works centered on nature. The exhibit is open to the public.