For their first Slow Art Day the Coral Gables Museum in Florida featured the reading of a Japanese fairy tale, and an exhibit with Japanese-style art by the artist known as The Talented Mr. Martin. The South Florida Charter Ensemble, a non-profit dedicated to improving lives through music, was a co-sponsor of this Slow Art Day, and took the lead in promoting and organizing the session (flyer below).
The session began with the Japanese Fairy Tale “Issun-bōshi”. The story revolves around a boy born to elderly parents, who had wanted a child for a long time. Despite Issun-bōshi only being one-inch tall, and never growing taller, he distinguishes himself through his courage and strong-will. In the story, he journeyes to far-off lands to find his place in the world, carrying a samurai sword made from a sewing needle, with a boat constructed from a rice bowl and rudder made from chopsticks. Below is a japanese drawing of Issun-bōshi, as he travels in his small boat.
The day’s event then transitioned into a slow looking session focused on Japanese art.
Here are some photos they sent to us from the day, featuring samurai armor constructed by The Talented Mr. Martin. The armor connects to the theme of bravery in the context of Japanese culture, which the children also encountered in the story of Issun-bōshi.
We are glad to have the Coral Gables Museum and the South Florida Charter Ensemble join the slow looking movement. Reading a known fairytale that connects to the theme is a great idea to for a Slow Art Day event for children, and we hope that more museums might be inspired by this.
We look forward to what the Coral Gables Museum creates for Slow Art Day 2024.
– Johanna, Ashley, Phyl and Jessica Jane