Today our playgroup met up at the Triton Museum of Art in Santa Clara. I have to admit, it was absolute chaos. After several of the paintings on display had been very roughly patted, tapped, or rubbed by enthusiastic toddlers (I kept my kids hands squeezed very tightly in mine so that they were not guilty of any offense), the kind Museum staff quietly suggested we take our group outside to the park nearby.
We stayed at the park for a little over an hour. When everyone was starting to pack their things and leave, my 3 year old told me that she needed to use a potty. The only one around was in the museum. So we decided to brave it one more time and go inside. The receptionist was so kind and showed us right to the restroom. After we came back out, my 3 year old again had something to tell me.
"Mom, I wanna look at the art." She said in a very serious voice.
"You want to look at the art?" I was a little skeptical because just an hour before, all she wanted to do was run and jump and yell with her friends.
"Yes. I like the monster one over there. Look! He doesn't have any eyes. They all fell out!" She was pointing at an exhibit of anti-consumerism paintings on a nearby wall.
I figured it couldn't hurt to take another spin through the museum, as long as my kids didn't touch anything. They held my hands very nicely and we walked through each exhibit and looked at every painting, discussing each one. It is amazing to me how my 3 year old can pick out things in paintings that I never notice. We talked about the different colors, picked out our favorites, and tried to decide what some abstract art looked like. We were correct in our assessment of the abstract art. We guessed that it looked like the beach, and then we saw the name of the exhibit, "Pacific Paintings" by Kenjilo Nanao. They were these beautiful, enormous paintings that simulated coastal scenes.
I am so glad that we went back in the museum and took another stroll through. My kids had a lot of fun looking at the artwork and talking about them, and I got a chance to look at all the exhibits as well.