A Self-Guided Tour for Young People and Their Families: Page 4
The New Child: British Art and the Origins of Modern Childhood
An exhibition at the University Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive, UC Berkeley
August 23 - November 19, 1995
Artist: George Morland
Title: Blind Man's Buff
Lender: Detroit Institute of the Arts
Meet some kids hanging out and playing a game called "Blind Man's Buff." This looks like a normal scene to us, but did you know that before the 1700s, kids were not allowed to play after they reached the age of seven? Playing was considered bad, and children were forced to act like miniŠadults and forbidden by their parents to play! It wasn't until the 1700s that people began to understand that kids could learn through play.
- Do you think the artist thought playing was bad for kids older than seven? How old do you think these kids are?
- Where do you think they live?
- Do you think these are rich children, like the Blunt brothers and the Bacon children? Why, or why not? What visual clues can you find in the painting to figure this out?
- Do these children look as if they know their picture is being painted? Do they look posed, or like they were placed in certain positions by the artist and then asked to "hold still"?
- Which children look like they're more comfortable, the Bacon children from the first gallery, or these kids?
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