Exploration of Cultural Heritage

  • In their classroom, students reflect on the phrase “a sense of place” and what it means in their own lives. They also compare and contrast Will Henry Stevens’ oil pastel works with Japanese prints that they studied in a previous unit.
  • At the museum’s temporary gallery (its permanent home was underconstruction at the time of filming), students view New Orleans and North Carolina scenes painted by Stevens, comparing the colors and composition used in each location. They experiment with Stevens’ medium, oil pastels, to investigate how the artist achieved the muted tones he typically used.
  • Also at the museum, students meet Louise Kepper, an artist who worked with Stevens 60 years earlier. Kepper tells the children that Stevens “taught me to see and to feel. Even more than drawing, he taught me to look ... in detail and pick out what was the most important thing.”
  • On the banks of the Mississippi River, where Stevens once made his own drawings, local artist Warren Irwin helps students see with artists’ eyes as they sketch the horizon line.