Online Virtual Exploration

Provider: The Ringling

Contact: Katie Nickel

Starting cost per student: $0

Additional Info:

Max. Capacity: 30

Transportation Needed?  No

Who Arranges Transportation? Other (see description)

Is Financial Assistance Offered?  Yes


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On this FREE 45-minute interactive tour with The Ringling for grades 3-5, students will learn about abstract artist Sam Gilliam, practice improvisation, and discuss the artistic movements that complemented the Civil Rights Movement. Students will listen to jazz greats Miles Davis, John Coltrane, and Thelonious Monk as they critically examine Gilliam’s abstract work, discussing how both musicians and visual artists practice improvisation. Gilliam himself listened to these same artists as he worked, and students will try their hand at improvisation, listening to jazz while making abstract drawings all their own.

This tour introduces students to improvisation in both jazz and visual art through the exhibition Sam Gilliam: Selections on view at The Ringling through May 2021. We will closely examine three works of art from the exhibition while listening to jazz music. Students will discuss both the historical context for these works of art as well as analyze the technical elements of improvisation and spontaneity.


SS.3.C.2.1, VA.3.S.1.2, VA.4.S.1.3, VA.5.S.1.3, MU.3.C.1.2, MU.3.C.3.1, MU.3.H.2.1, MU.4.C.1.2, MU.5.C.1.1, MU.5.H.2.1

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