Today we welcomed students from Half Hollows Hills High School East to LongHouse. Many schools from across Long Island visit us throughout the year, but mostly in the spring and fall. Each group gets a tour of the grounds by one of our volunteer docents and is free to do onsite work and enjoy lunch here before heading back to their school. Visits to LongHouse are always free, a terrific savings to many school districts that face budgetary issues and cuts to arts education. Not only are the students enriched who visit LongHouse but we are also enriched by sharing their experience in the space.
Our wonderful docents, Irene Tully and Pam Spencer led the tour today, including a stop at Takashi Soga's fantastic piece, "Eye of the Ring."
Ninguen, 2008, by Tominaga Atsuya, caught this student's eye near the Dry River garden.
Irene Tully tells the students the story of Eric Fischl's "Tumbling Woman." Most of these high schoolers were not yet born when 9/11 occurred.
Students delighted in spotting frogs in Peter's Pond.
These students are working in ceramics this year and were bowled over by these majestic Jun Kaneko untitled "dangos".
Students are always curious about the art at LongHouse and are full of questions. They often ask about the process or the thoughts behind a work, things that are the bailiwick of the artist, and whenever possible we pass along the students' questions to them and relay the answer back to their teacher.
Two pieces of art join together to become a favorite of kids of all ages. The water installation, "Black Mirror" was designed by LongHouse founder Jack Lenor Larsen and built and installed by Ray Smith & Associates, Inc. The geyser in the middle is attached to a control box behind the piece and is operated on a timer.
"The Invisible" by Enrique Martinez Celaya was installed within Black Mirror earlier this year.
For the first time ever, we put the wish paper out for our Yoko Ono Wish Tree as the students wanted to write wishes and attach them to the tree. The Wish Tree is always available for visitors to hang their deepest wishes but today we started a new tradition to allow schoolchildren to do the same. At the end of the season, the wishes are sent to Yoko Ono who then sends them to be put in the Imagine Peace Tower. The kids loved the experience!
Two students writing out wishes to attach to the Yoko Ono Wish Tree.
We always feel enriched when kids visit LongHouse. It goes to the core of our mission to host them here, and watch them be inspired and excited by what they find in the gardens. For many, this is their first trip to a public garden or museum. It is always our honor to have them visit. Tomorrow we have a group coming from the Eastern Suffolk Bixhorn Technical Center and we are excited to welcome them back. As Jack Larsen likes to say, "Onward!!"
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