Shauni James is a Rotorua Daily Post reporter

Children encouraged to view art on their own at Rotorua exhibition

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Children looking at Muka Prints at the Rotorua Museum in 2014. Photo/Supplied
Children looking at Muka Prints at the Rotorua Museum in 2014. Photo/Supplied

Children are encouraged to independently view art in an upcoming exhibition being held for one day only.

Hosted by Rotorua Museum, the Muka Youth Prints exhibition follows a unique concept that allows children between the ages of 5 and 18 to independently view art in an 'adult free' space.

It includes a range of lithograph sketches by prominent New Zealand and international artists.

Rotorua Museum event co-ordinator Kathy Nicholls says a lithograph is an authorized copy of an original work created by the artist, usually in a limited edition run.

She says the exhibition comes to Rotorua Museum annually as part of nationwide tour.

"The Muka Prints concept allows young people to view and choose art without the influence of parents or adults, really allowing them to decide what art pieces they like on their own terms.

"The names and signatures of the artists are covered over during the shows, so that young art collectors look at the work, not considering the fame of the artist or potential for financial gain."

She says a number of well-known artists from all over the world are invited to produce a set of small (100x200mm) original lithographs.

To make the works accessible, all art is for sale at just $75 each.

"It's a great way to give children ownership of an affordable piece art that they have chosen - a great way to foster an early appreciation in art."

Co-founder and Muka director Magda Van Gils, who has been involved in the project since 1986, says the method of exhibition allows young people to develop a unique awareness of art that cannot be taught.

"By entering the room without adults, and with an opportunity to choose, young people really engage with the works of art."

For more information contact Rotorua Museum phone (07) 350 1814 or email Rotorua.museum@rotorualc.nz.

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