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Ridgefield, CT (March 2017)—The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum and Fairfield University are pleased to announce the beginning of an ongoing partnership centered on the Museum, faculty, and students in the creation of the inaugural Summer Institute—Text and Context: Teaching and Learning through Contemporary Art and the Written Word. Summer Institute is a professional development opportunity for K-12 educators and creative professionals presented by The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum and Fairfield University that will take place at The Aldrich, June 27 to 30, from 10 am to 3 pm each day. The cost for Summer Institute is $400, which includes all workshop supplies.

With contemporary art as core content, participants will discover innovative strategies for integrating the arts across disciplines in this four-day institute led by Aldrich and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum teaching artist Jeff Hopkins, Ed.M., and Fairfield University faculty in the English Department, Professors Sonya Huber and Carol Ann Davis, and Fine Arts Department, Professor Jo Yarrington. Participants will investigate the textbased exhibitions on view at The Aldrich and session leaders will draw from the ideas posed by the exhibiting artists, while exploring the work in the galleries and leading activities and conversations that question the roles of introspective observer and critical commentator regarding both society and self. The program will draw connections between creativity and learning, and strengthen visual literacy skills and inquiry-based teaching methods. Participants will also have the opportunity to recharge their imaginations through a range of participatory art-making and writing activities.

Each day, participants will engage in an on-going mixed-media project with Jeff Hopkins, laying the foundation for arts integration. This exercise will be complemented by exhibition-inspired sessions led by Fairfield University faculty who specialize in cross-cultural and social justice studies, poetry, and creative non-fiction. Additionally, participants will engage with regional experts in the arts who will showcase best practices in museum teaching pedagogy. Throughout this innovative program, there will be the opportunity to connect with colleagues across grade levels and disciplines.

“The Aldrich is thrilled to establish an educational partnership with Fairfield University. This collaboration is an expression of our shared commitment to highly effective, multi-faceted teaching and learning. We are particularly excited to engage with the University’s English and Art Department faculty, who share a like-minded interest in developing innovative strategies for cross-disciplinary thinking,” says Alyson Baker, Executive Director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.

“Fairfield University is excited to enter into an educational partnership with The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield. Our first joint-venture draws on strengths in innovative teaching and learning that characterize both our institutions, and we look forward to the many programming opportunities that our collaboration with such a forwardthinking and creative institution as The Aldrich will provide,” says Christine Siegel, Interim Provost, Fairfield University. For more information and to register, please visit: http://bit.ly/2mCQweY For Aldrich press inquires, please contact: Emily Devoe at 203.438.4519, extension 140, or edevoe@aldrichart.org For Fairfield University press inquires, please contact: Susan Cipollaro at 203.254.4000, extension 2726, or scipollaro@fairfield.edu