Parrish Art Museum Receives Grant to Develop Educational Programs for Students

The Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill.
The Parrish Art Museum in Water Mill. Photo credit: Jarno Huttunen

The Parrish Art Museum has been awarded a three-year $83,495 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) in support of Art + Language: A New Design for Learning, an integrated education initiative that uses works from the permanent collection to enhance visual thinking, deductive reasoning and language skills of 700 students from the Bridgehampton, Southampton, and Tuckahoe schools. Art + Language is one of 206 museum projects selected from a pool of 548 applicants to the Museums for America grant program. The project period is from October 1, 2016 through September 30, 2019. 

“This grant allows us to refine our ongoing work with Southampton and Tuckahoe schools and enables us to add a new partner: Bridgehampton School,” said Cara Conklin-Wingfield, Director of Education at the Parrish, in a press release. “In partnership with the schools, we will develop, implement, and evaluate visual arts-based units of study based on the Museum’s permanent collection that will support Common Core State Standards and address key components of the National Core Art Standards. This new initiative will support teaching and learning in schools that are under the combined pressures of budget cuts, new standards, and a steadily increasing number of English-language learners.”

Designed for grades 4, 5, 6, 7, and 9, the 12-week program will provide students with skills and opportunities to find personal meaning and relevance in works of art through structured engagement with the Museum’s collection. The sessions will include museum visits where participants analyze and discuss  works of art, lessons in which students will compare visual art, film and literary forms; follow up museum visits with visiting artists from the Parrish collection; creating original work ranging from visual art to writing, verbal expression, and electronic media. The unit ends with the students presenting, discussing, and reflecting on their creative output in a group setting. 

At the completion of the program, the Parrish will create educational materials that will be available to schools and teachers through regional teacher networks and teacher training programs, and distributed at regional conferences. These resources will include complete lesson plans for classroom activities and Museum visits.

The Parrish Art Museum is located at 279 Montauk Highway, Water Mill. For more information, visit

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