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Sculpture and Sketching: From Traditional to Modern

Grades 4 through 12

The National Gallery of Art will offer a selection of in-person and virtual tours (using Zoom) for fall 2022.

Requests for all tours (October 3 – December 2) will be accepted from August 1 – November 4, 2022

From figurative bronzes and marble carvings toworks of art that challenge conventional ideas about sculpture, students will investigate materials, techniques, subject matter, and artistic intent. Through sketching exercises and discussion, students will develop their own ideas and interpretations about traditional sculpture in the West Building and modern sculptures in the East Building.

Looking and Learning Skills

This tour encourages participants to develop their own ideas and interpretations based on careful observation, sketching, and discussion of sculpture at five to six stops. Students will practice:

  • Using sketching as a tool to observe and understand sculptural technique, form, and function
  • Debating, discussing, and interpreting the intended purposeand messageof a sculpture or group of sculpture, and
  • Comparing and contrasting the materials, technique, and subject matter of sculptures

Examples of Works Featured on Tour

In-Person Tour Information

Group Size: Up to 60 students
Length: 90 minutes
Meeting Location: West Building Rotunda

Tours must be scheduled at least four weeks in advance. Groups must contain at least 15 students.

Once your tour has been scheduled, you will receive an email confirmation in 10 business days.

Watch a video (grades 1-4) or download a presentation (grades 4-12) (PPT, 4MB) to show your students what to expect on their tour. Please review museum policies, location, parking, accessibility, security, lunch options, and other important visitor information.

Our tour scheduler is available to answer questions on Monday through Wednesday between 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. (September through May). Please contact her at (202) 842-6249 [email protected].

Also see our Frequently Asked Questions about School Tours.

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