After building up some confidence on our first two outings, Baby Explorer and I hop in the car and venture out to Heide in Bulleen. We travel in from the city and find signs along the freeway direct us clearly to the Museum which is less than ten minutes off the Thompsons Road Exit on the Eastern Freeway.
The session is due to start at 10am which coincidentally is the time that the museum opens. It’s a beautiful morning and we wait patiently outside with other babies and their carers as rather stylish museum staff walk by and make their way into the museum. A fun spot of people watching!
Bernie and assistant Mel come out to greet us and lead us into the museum foyer where we are able to leave prams if we so wish. As some still need to use prams (naturally there are always one or two bubs who will fall asleep at the start of a session!), we are able to use the ramps to make our way through the museum.
Bernie leads us through a 30-minute session guiding us to look, think, talk and even touch their latest exhibition. Watson’s work features words and pictures in various mediums to relay her thoughts, experiences, dreams and desires of a self-proclaimed suburban girl.
The Heide Art Babies program focuses on the role of art in infant development and Bernie points out ways we can do this with our babies.
So how much of an art exhibition is baby able to take in and appreciate, you may wonder? Heide has gone to a lot of effort to cater to their tiny audience; creating smaller versions of pieces which babies are free to touch and experience. Watson uses hair in some of her works which is recreated in the miniature format which Baby Explorer curiously explores with her toes…
Bernie guides the carers, providing us with questions and language we may want to use when taking in art with our babies. What do we see? How does the piece make us feel?
Bernie and Mel provide additional ideas on how to bring colours and textures to bub’s attention, introducing to us to colourful rattles and textural panels which can be made using recycled products we may already have around the home.
We return to the mat to capture our reflections on a coloured panel, similar to those Watson features in her own exhibition. Then finally it’s a song to close the session, Mel suggests “Sing a Rainbow” which is a fitting end to this colourful session.
Heide Museum of Modern Art usually run Heide Art Babies every week on Tuesdays. Tickets are $18 for adults ($14 for members/concession). Your ticket allows you to enter the galleries and exhibitions afterwards and you can take time out to enjoy the sculpture gardens and picnic in the grounds.
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- Eat on-site or get a picnic box (or bring your own picnic) to enjoy on the grounds; and
- There are two car parks at Heide – the car park at the main entry is quite small; follow the signs to the larger car park if the front one is full.