Last Saturday took place the first “Contes i Tocs” that this Spring Patricia McGill will tell to children and their parents within the museum galleries.
This activity was organised by Marta Iglesias from Public Programmes. I wanted to attend both out of professional interest so as to get to know this new offer for the family public, but also, as a mother, to live this experience with my children.
The participants and Patricia met up in the Pati Finestres of the museum, and that was where the story began. Nice blue coloured monsters with three eyes and one leg, started to spring up in everyone’s imagination, while she made us take hold of a rope, and pulling on it, led us round the rooms of the museum until we reached Las Meninas, where we found more monsters, princesses, cats and dogs, vacuum cleaner-coffee machines, piano-boats, and even the Little Prince and Little Red Riding Hood… The children and their parents added bits to the story and she intertwined the stories while offering a different way of looking at the works of Picasso, based on her words and our imagination, both individually and what we constructed together between us.
Playing with the stories. Photos: Jordi Mota
I really enjoyed the activity and the fact of seeing the children’s faces fascinated by the stories which emerged – and all in all it was a great experience. But it was also the feeling of being so welcomed by the rest of the visitors to the museum, who suddenly saw us arrive, big ones and small ones holding on to a rope, at one moment sailing, the next half dancing, listening to and proposing stories. Unconsciously, we imposed a change of rhythm on their visit, but they greeted us with broad smiles.
The fact is that for everyone, it seems a long time since children were seen to be a nuisance in the rooms of museums. Rather, they are now seen to be a necessity so as to keep the works alive, and that they are lived by the children, that they make them their own, and incorporate them into their own world. And in this sense, I believe that this new proposal of the museum, that welcomes families to the exhibition rooms, is very valuable indeed.
When you go to the museums with children, what do you want to find?
What experiences do you have?