AP Drawing field trip to the Museum of Contemporary Art

Kayla Arjon

One of the various sound suits on display.

On September 14 the students in various art classes at Morton West and Morton East went to the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. This museum displays only contemporary art and changes out its exhibits periodically, but during the student’s visit, the main exhibit was Nick Cave’s various pieces of art. Nick Cave is a contemporary artist who is known for the “Sound Suits” he makes, which are suits made with various materials that are mainly for dancing. Students were required to do a scavenger hunt in this exhibit and do a study on one of the various “Sound Suits” on display.

Alena Mendoza, an AP art student who went on this trip, shared how her experience was at the museum, “My experience at the museum was really nice honestly! At first, I was a little nervous cause I’m not that close to anyone in the class, but I actually ended up being a part of a little group, so it was really nice.” Since the field trip was hosted for art education reasons, was the trip useful to the students who went? Mendoza had said, “Yeah it really was useful to me! I learned that anything could be art if you really put your mind to it.” Mendoza also mentioned that she would like to go again to the Museum of Contemporary Art, especially since minors under 18 get free entry into the museum.

Another sound suit made with buttons and fur.

Now why was this field trip hosted? Ana Sotomayor, Art teacher and one of the hosts of the field trip said “This field trip was hosted for students to see how contemporary artists create art today.” Sotomayor stated that “Nick Cave uses found materials to create his artworks and they challenge what people would consider “traditional” art. His Sound Suits are beautiful but have a lot of meaning incorporated within them. Students were able to see them in person and get an idea of how much work went into each suit.“ Sotomayor also shared what she personally wanted students to learn from this trip. “I want students to learn how they can include materials within their work of art to guide their art explorations. AP Art focuses a lot on using materials to make meaning.” Sotomayor related this to the spotlight artist by saying, “Nick Cave is a great artist to introduce this concept to them and have them start brainstorming on how they can do this within their own artworks too.”

After hearing everyone’s thoughts, it’s clear that the trip to the museum was something beneficial for AP art students learning how to create art from many different mediums. The chaotic but beautiful way Nick Cave’s art is made can definitely teach art students that anything can be made into something beautiful and give a fun viewing experience.