"Let’s Be Friends?" - Exhibiton for children. Animals in art

Ēriks Apaļais. Spring. 2007. Oil on canvas. LNMA collection. Photo: Normunds Brasliņš
Ēriks Apaļais. Spring. 2007. Oil on canvas. LNMA collection. Photo: Normunds Brasliņš

An exhibition for child audiences Let’s Be Friends? will be on view in the 4th Floor Exhibition Halls of the main building of the Latvian National Museum of Art in Riga (Jaņa Rozentāla laukums 1) from 15 September to 28 October 2018. The display invites visitors to explore animal representations in art and encourages children to think about values like friendship, trust, compassion, love, and responsibility.

The main goal of the project is to communicate with the youngest visitors of the museum about topics that are important and interesting to them during the time they develop a deeper understanding of the surrounding world. The chosen title Let’s Be Friends? goes along with the way children explore and learn – by asking questions.

The collection of the Latvian National Museum of Art (LNMA) holds several dozens of artistically expressive paintings, graphic works and sculptures depicting animals. These artworks of different pets and farm animals reveal various patterns of interaction between humans, humans and animals, animals and animals. Their presence in our homes has long become a natural phenomenon. Looking back into history, we see that initially animals served more as helpers in heavy housework, whereas now we often perceive them, especially pets, as embodiments of friendship, support and joy, or in some cases – fashion statements. The selected works specifically concentrate on the portrayal of friendship, trust, compassion and love between a human/child and the animal, keeping in mind the well-known truth – we become responsible for what we have tamed.

The exhibition offers works from late 19th century up until the 21st century, displaying recognized Latvian masters, such as Johann Heinrich Baumann, Ādams Alksnis and Teodors Zaļkalns, as well as artists concentrating on the portrayal of human-animal relationships – Janis Rozentāls, Jēkabs Bīne, Jānis Rikmanis, Kārlis Krauze, Kārlis Padegs, Daina Riņķe, Ērika Gulbe, Laima Eglīte, Gunta Liepiņa-Grīva, Ēriks Apaļais, and others.

Noteworthy, interests and perception patterns of children (age 3–8) are the main measurements of the exhibition design and arrangement – artworks are positioned according to the eye height of a child, explanatory texts and tasks are short and simple and there is dedicated space for creative and interactive tasks.

The Latvian National Museum of Art is increasingly expanding its work towards young families to even better accommodate their time at the museum. This project, created by the museum’s team of educators, adds to this line of work. The exhibition, together with its educational programme, is intended to serve as an intellectually and emotionally exciting adventure for children under 8 years of age.

Laura Dravniece
, Curator of Education, Latvian National Museum of Art
Ph: (+371) 67 324461, E: Laura.Dravniece@lnmm.lv

Anna Pūtele, Curator of Education, Latvian National Museum of Art
Ph: (+371) 67 324461, E: Anna.Putele@lnmm.lv

Diāna Dimza-Dimme
, Elīna Bērziņa, Annija Sauka, Latvian National Museum of Art

Kristīne Lāce
, Anna Dzene, Natalie Suyunshalieva, Latvian National Museum of Art

Anete Straume
, Latvijas Nacionālais mākslas muzejs

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The main building of the Latvian National Museum of Art / Jaņa Rozentāla laukums 1, Riga, Latvia

Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays 10.00–18.00, ticket office 10.00–17.30
Fridays 10.00–20.00, ticket office 10.00–19.30
Saturdays, Sundays 10.00–17.00, ticket office 10.00–16.30
Closed on Mondays

The museum is closed on all public holidays: 1 January, Good Friday, Easter, Midsummer Eve and Day (23–24 June), Christmas (25–26 December), 31 December.

ADMISSION: NB! (this ticket gives you access to all permanent displays)
Reduced individual admission fee for groups of 10 or more people.
Free admission for the person in charge of the group.
Adults: 3,00 EUR
Students, seniors: 1,50 EUR
Schoolchildren: 0,50 EUR
Family ticket (1–2 adults with 1–4 children or family having many children): 5,00–7,00 EUR
Free admission for LNMA Annual ticket holders.

Free entry is also for: pre-school children; orphans or children not under parental care (valid status identification card required); children with a disability up to 18 years, 1st and 2nd group disabled persons (valid status identification card required) and one person accompanying either a child with a disability up to 18 years or a 1st or 2nd group disabled person; pupils of Latvian art schools or professional secondary art schools (valid status identification card required); full-time students of the Art Academy of Latvia (valid status identification card required); students attending institutions of professional secondary education or colleges who are studying or receiving training in visual or applied art, design, cultural history, museology, architecture, restoration as part of their studies or training (on submission of a written application to the museum director at least one day earlier); employees of Latvian museums (valid status identification card required); members of the International Council of Museums (ICOM, valid status membership card required); members of the Latvian Artists’ Union (valid status identification card required); Friend of the LNMA card holders; media representatives who are covering museum events (valid status identification card required); group (no less than 10 persons) leaders – guides or teachers; everyone on the international event Museum Night from 19.00; all visitors to the permanent display on the last Sunday of every month and on International Museum Day – 18th May.

Press release prepared by:
Natalie Suyunshalieva
Head of Press
The Latvian National Museum of Art
Ph: (+371) 67 357527
F: (+371) 67 357520
E: pr.service@lnmm.lv 
I: www.lnmm.lv