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School of Fine ArtsThe William Benton Museum of Art

Instructor Toolkit

Examples of learning opportunities offered by the Museum.

ANTH/LLAS 3029: The Caribbean
Dr. Noga Shemer’s anthropology class visited Ancestors of the Passage, an installation by Puerto Rican-American artist Imna Arroyo that addresses the transatlantic slave trade. The group of forty students came to the museum in two shifts, with half the class watching a thirty-minute film while the other half discussed Arroyo’s work in the museum with Benton staff. The class visit examined representations of slavery, colonialism, and their legacies through a comparison of multiple media.

ENG 1701: Creative Writing
Creative writing instructor Pegi Shea asked her students to write ekphrastic poems inspired by original works of art displayed in the Benton. The group spent time writing in the museum as part of a self-guided class visit.

GERM 1169: Contemporary Germany in Europe
Dr. Shane Peterson selected four prints by German artist Käthe Köllwitz for an Object Study Session at the Benton. Before coming to class, students listened to a podcast about the artist. At the museum, students spent time describing, analyzing, and interpreting the prints with a worksheet, which became the basis for discussion.

ILCS 1145: Elementary Italian I
Graduate assistant Jeanne Bonner brought her Italian language class for a focused discussion of the painting Saint Sebastian (c. 1630). Using the Critical Looking framework, students analyzed the artwork and considered topics such as its site(s) of display, its potential meaning for viewers in seventeenth-century Italy, the painting’s status as a copy, and the significance of Saint Sebastian today. The visit concluded with a lesson in Italian.