Ants Go Marching

By: Lisa Hoffman, curator of education on May 10th, 2017

May is hustle-bustling along, as it does each year. The glorious angle of the sun’s rays produces light and once again, warmth . . . igniting a burst of busyness. Those who live in northern climes truly appreciate the enterprise awakened with the daffodils and by the robin’s song. Dormancy gives rise to effervescent animation. One weekend we stare at a brown, dull landscape; the next, blooms and blossoms of all hues revive our senses and histamine responses. While vegetable-garden dreams remain earthbound in May, my co-workers chatter about anticipated flower plantings, mulch, yard cleaning, digging in the dirt, and welcoming the migrating birds.

M.C. Escher’s iconic Möbius Strip II springs to mind – with the tireless, industrious ants parading on both sides of an endless path. The artwork is a tour stop for the nearly seven hundred pre-kindergarten to second-grade students visiting this spring. A chorus of “The Ants Go Marching” can be heard filling the galleries during each tour.

Spring blooms include our Head Start friends. Adorned in matching bright t-shirts, the 3- and 4-year-olds bring cheery voices, sunny smiles, and enthusiasm. Dozens of Head Start friends march up Franklin Hill (if you’ve seen the incline of Franklin Hill, you will respect this significant endeavor) to visit the Woodson Art Museum.

Pleasant marching weather in Wisconsin is limited to fall and spring, so Head Start season at the Museum signifies new growth, hope, warmth, and light at the dawn of each new school year and as spring sprouts. These friends visit four times during the school year and each tour in the galleries includes a story, movement, music or song, a hands-on art project, and time in the family interactive gallery – Art Park. We are grateful for the Head Start staff’s commitment to sharing art – and all the Woodson Art Museum has to offer – with their students.

Include a visit to the Woodson Art Museum in your own busy May plans, but march swiftly because M.C. Escher: Reality and Illusion remains on view only for a few more weeks, through Sunday, May 28.

P.S.: The Museum staff also is teeming with gratitude this spring while we once again welcome thousands of students and visitors from throughout the region to our galleries. Thank you to our dedicated, enthusiastic, and talented volunteer docent and greeter corps and SPARK! friends for providing exceptional service to our community and region.

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