School Tour Options

Highlights of the Collection 

On Highlights Tours, students participate in interactive, inquiry-based conversations that introduce them to the art and cultures represented in the collections of the Carlos Museum. Highlights Tours offer an overview of the entire collection or can be focused on ancient Egypt and the Near East, ancient Greece and Rome, the art of the Americas, 19th- and 20th-century Africa, or Buddhist and Hindu art from South Asia. 

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Special Exhibitions


Unlike our permanent collection galleries, our special exhibitions change regularly. Explore our special exhibitions, and schedule your tour today.

Transcendent Deities of India: The Everyday Occurrence of the Divine 
On view January 18 – October 18, 2020

The gods and goddesses revered in Hindu religious practice in India have populated the art of that region for thousands of years, inspiring worshippers and artists alike. Images of deities continue to demonstrate their power for hundreds of millions of people as part of their daily rituals at temples, shrines, and other settings, within India and in the broader global diaspora. This exhibition focuses on the ongoing impact of classical depictions of Hindu deities on both modern and contemporary artists.

Transcendent Deities of India: The Everyday Occurrence of the Divine features modern and contemporary representations of these gods and goddesses. Works of art include photographs by contemporary artist Manjari Sharma, digital and hand-drawn works on paper from Abhishek Singh, and earlier chromolithographs from the Raja Ravi Varma Press. These artists have built upon the visual culture they observed growing up in India, surrounded by images that have been part of a multi-faceted religious landscape.

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Guiding Questions

  • Who are the gods and goddesses of the Hindu pantheon? How does one recognize the different deities in works of art? 
  • How do Hindu devotees interact with images of gods and goddesses? How does context affect how viewers relate to an image? How would an image of a deity be understood in a museum? In a temple or shrine? In a graphic novel? In a comic book? 
  • How do the artists in this exhibition explore the visual representations of deities in Hindu culture? 

Tour by Collection Area(s)

Collection areas available for tours include Africa, the Art of the Americas, Egypt and the Ancient Near East, Greece and Rome, and South Asia. Choose up to three areas for your tour.

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Animals in Art | Grades K-5

Explore how cultures around the globe have understood, interpreted, and depicted the animals in their environment. Students are encouraged to make observations and inferences that foster visual literacy. As they explore artistic interpretations of animals across the collections, students will learn that the ancients were keen observers of nature whose relationship with nature helped shape their perception of the world around them. 

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Guiding Questions

  • How did the keen observation of animals in their natural habitats give form to a culture’s conception of the divine?  
  • How can an animal represent certain characteristics (clever, lucky) in one culture and very different characteristics (evil, conniving) in another?  
  • What aspects of the animal’s appearance or behavior has the artist highlighted? What does that say about how the animal was viewed?  
  • What do these objects tell us about how these cultures interacted with, viewed, and revered animals? How is that different (or similar) from our relationship with animals?  

AP Art History | Grades 9-12  

Prepare for the “250” at the Carlos Museum. From works of art on “the list” like Maria and Julian Martinez’s black-on-black pottery to other objects from cultures across the globe, time spent in the Carlos galleries offers students the opportunity to connect with the artistic process, strengthen their visual literacy skills through examination and analysis, and contextualize works of art they study in the classroom.  

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Guiding Questions

  • What is art, and how is it made?  
  • How do artistic decisions about artmaking shape a work of art?  
  • What can you infer about a work of art by analyzing its form, function, content, and context?  
  • What variables can lead to multiple interpretations of a work of art?  

Archaeology | All Grades  

As they explore the galleries, students will hear about pioneering archaeologist Kathleen Kenyon and the development of stratigraphy at the ancient site of Jericho. They will learn about the methods archaeologists use to analyze objects once they have come out of the ground, including drawing, x-ray, chemical analysis, carbon-14 dating, and other scientific techniques that contribute to the understanding of material culture.  

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Guiding Questions

  • How can archaeology help us interpret the past?  
  • What is the benefit of scientific techniques in archaeology? What methods are helpful? Why?  
  • How have scientific techniques helped us understand the values and behavior of cultures from the past?  

Ars Longa, Vita Brevis: Latin | Grades 6-12  

Since “art is long and life, short,” seize the day and visit Ulysses, Menelaus, Europa, and the Emperor Tiberius in the galleries of the Carlos Museum. Students will discover the importance of Roman portraiture and propaganda, reinforce your reading with scenes from Ovid and Virgil, explore Roman funeral rituals, and translate inscriptions on cinerary urns.  

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Guiding Questions

  • How was Greco-Roman culture depicted through art?  
  • How were visual representations of myths and stories about gods and goddesses used to highlight Roman values?  
  • How did Roman politicians use visual culture to assert their power across an empire?  

Belief, Behavior, and Belonging | Grades 6-12 

In a pluralistic society, religious literacy is essential. The collections of the Carlos Museum provide an opportunity for students to engage with the ways in which religion has shaped cultures since the beginning of civilization. Artwork tells the story of a culture’s beliefs and behaviors and can spark conversations about ways in which ethics, values, and beliefs influence individual behavior and create a shared sense of belonging. Developed in conjunction with Georgia 3Rs Project, this interactive tour is designed to promote dialogue and understanding. 

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Guiding Questions

  • What is religion?  
  • Why is it important to learn about religions other than your own?  
  • How do cultures develop shared values and beliefs? What factors shape these beliefs? How do works of art reflect a culture’s belief systems and ritual behaviors? 
  • How do beliefs, ethics, or values influence different people’s behavior?  

Birding at the Carlos | Grades K-5 

One of the few animals to appear as a subject in the art of nearly every culture, birds have long fascinated humans. Students will unleash their inner ornithologist on a guided tour that looks at the various birds that human beings have observed in their environment and represented in their art. This tour has been developed in conjunction with the Atlanta Audubon Society.   

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Guiding Questions

  • What key features do all birds have in common?  
  • How have cultures represented birds throughout history? What qualities or features have humans associated with birds?  
  • What qualities of birds have artisans chose to highlight? How does this help us identify the bird represented? 

Colonialism and Conflict | Grades 6-12  

Like diaries and letters, works of art are primary sources. On this tour students learn to analyze material culture from Africa and the Americas that illustrate the collision of indigenous and European cultures.  

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Guiding Questions

  • How do indigenous cultures use art to subvert colonial power? 
  • How has colonialism affected the production, value, and purpose of art made by indigenous peoples? 
  • What can works of art tell us about the comingling of indigenous and colonial cultures?  

Drawing in the Galleries | All Grades  

Extending the long tradition of drawing in museums, close looking and drawing exercises in the galleries of the Carlos will introduce or reinforce the principles and elements of art and increase visual literacy and observation skills.  

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Guiding Questions

  • How have artists and artisans from the past utilized the principles and elements of art and design?  
  • How can studying existing objects and works of art throughout history contribute to a young artist’s practice?  

Spanish | All Grades  

From ritual objects used by the Inka to large jade earspools worn by the Maya to Aztec chocolate pots, the Carlos collections feature works from indigenous American cultures. On a tour led by a Spanish-speaking docent, students will practice conversation and vocabulary on a guided tour through the Carlos collections of art from ancient Central and South America. 

Group size is limited to 30 students. A minimum of four weeks notice is required.

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Guiding Questions

  • What vocabulary can you practice and use on a museum visit?   
  • What was the pre-contact history of some of the cultures native to the Americas, many of which are located in present-day Spanish speaking countries?  
  • What conversations can you have about objects in a museum?  

 

The Science Behind Art Conservation | Grades 4-12  

Students learn to think like a conservator, understanding the real-world questions and problems that museums confront when working with material that can be thousands of years old. This interactive tour examines three major areas on which conservators focus: research, treatment, and prevention.

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Guiding Questions

  • What is art conservation?  
  • What do conservators do to prevent damage to works of art? How do they conduct research? How do conservators determine appropriate treatment strategies? 
  • How do chemistry, physics, and biology inform conservation?  
  • Why is conservation important in the care of museum objects?  
  • What scientific and ethical questions do conservators consider before treating an object?  

Water: Where Science and Civilization Meet | All Grades  

Students are invited to explore how different cultures have approached the excess and scarcity of water and how this natural resource has influenced civilization throughout history, particularly through art, design, ritual, and religion.   

Teachers may also wish to add on a tour of Emory’s WaterHub to this tour of the Carlos. The WaterHub is an on-site water recycling system that utilizes eco-engineering processes to clean waste water for non-potable uses. Emory's WaterHub recycles up to 400,000 gallons-per-day, nearly 40% of Emory’s total campus water needs, and is the first system of its kind to be installed in the US. 

Tours are available from 10 AM — noon on Friday mornings, and will incur an additional $20 charge per group.

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Guiding Questions

  • What can works of art tell us about the environment in which they were created? 
  • How do cultures respond to the excess or scarcity of water?  
  • How does water help to shape the social structure of a culture? 
  • How is control of water related to power? 
  • What role does water play in religious belief and ritual? 
  • What materials have artists associated with water?