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CROSS - CULTURAL DISCOVERY OF THE LOUVRE

Type of tool: 
Activity
Duration: 
120+ min
Topics addressed: 
EuroMed
Intercultural learning
Religion

A tool to discover the history and values of the Three Cultures and of the concept of secularism through the use of visual arts.

Aim: 

The city of Paris was used as a resource and all the cultural or religious landmarks contributed substantially in building up the input.

Methodology: 

Group division: The groups are divided. All participants are handed the questionnaires containing the main instructions.
They are asked to keep to the journey’s plan throughout the various rooms. They are welcomed to share and reflect collectively and to take down the answers individually on the questionnaire.
Activity: The real-time activity lasts 2 hours. This time can be adapted to the place where the activity is run.
Debriefing: All the groups meet at the end of the itinerary to share the answers and the comments on the painting and their representations.

Step by step process: 

STEP 0 – As a preparatory step, trainer’s team meet at the Louvre to decide on the content to use for this activity. A series of photos is taken and the room number in which the paintings or art works were displayed noted. The team gathers next to formulate the possible questions that would draw, literally and figuratively, Ariadne's thread through the link these works have with religions and cultures. Then, once the questionnaire are designed, it is played in a real-time situation in order to measure its feasibility.
STEP 1 - The instructions are simple and clear. The participants have to favour individual reflection and group discussion and proceed along the itinerary to identify the works. The groups are divided into small numbers to go through the rooms more easily.
The questionnaire does not aim at high-score attainments or knowledge assessments. The aim is rather to help participants to identify the existing links between the three monotheist religions and their expression through a universal and cultural medium: the visual arts.
STEP 2 – Visiting the Louvre. Each group is accompanied by a trainer. The role of the latter is essentially to provoke discussion and maintain group cohesion.
STEP 3 – Debriefing. Checking the group’s answers with the correct answers. Plenary discussion.

Materials and resources: 

Audiovisual equipment: projector, laptop or PC, speakers, etc.
Maps of the Museum.
Tickets for the Museum.
Copies of the questionnaire.
Cameras or smartphones with camera devices.
Notebooks, pens.
Flip chart and markers.

Outcomes: 

According to the objectives, the participants are expected to get to know more about the artistic representations of Religion. To share their knowledge and to interact in a way that can lead to (inter)cultural learning.

Evaluation: 

The whole TC cycle was evaluated in a finale evaluation seminar called "Let's evaluate with our neighbors", 6-10 October 2009 Warsaw, Poland.

Notes for further use: 

While the number of attractions in Paris should not be underestimated, on a rainy day those that offer a roof and shelter are often taken by assault. If it is a rainy day and maybe even the first day of a school holiday, the team may be confronted with some issues like a great number of visitors inside the museum. One of the team members could act as a logistic provider,taking charge of the technical aspects of providing the tickets, facilitating the access through a seemingly endless queue and reminding participants about the practicalities of the venue.

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