The Phillips Plays
Have fun looking at works of art together! In groups of 2-8 people, try these games in any gallery with any work of art. With each game, designate one person to be the reader.
- Pick a work of art you are most curious about.
- Look for thirty seconds.
- Now turn around.
- Say everything you remember seeing.
- Face the painting and look again.
- Can you find five new things?
- Pick the biggest work of art in the room.
- Where does your eye go first?
- Now, switch positions with someone in your group.
- Find something new.
- Move up close. What else do you see?
- Now, move far away.
- How does the artwork change as you move to different positions?
- Have one person in your group read a question from the list below. After each one, each person stands by their personal choice.
- After each question, talk to each other about your choices.
Which work of art is the most powerful? What makes it look so powerful?
- Which work of art do you think looks the most expensive? What makes it look expensive?
- Which one would you have in your house? Where would you put it?
- Which work of art do you like the least? What don’t you like about it?
- Which work of art reminds you of something from your childhood? Talk about what it makes you think about.
- What work of art are you most curious about? What do you want to know?
- Imagine the story behind the artwork.
- What is happening now?
- What do you think happened just before?
- What do you think will happen next?
- Find the alphabet in the museum.
- While walking around, take a picture of something that starts with a letter of the alphabet. It could be based on the subject, title, material, something in the work of art, or something you see in the museum. Use your imaginations!
- Can you find the whole alphabet?
- Find a work of art with people in it.
- Pick your favorite person.
- What are they doing?
- What are they thinking?
- How do they feel?
- What was their life like?
- Pose and gesture like the figures you see. Act out their emotions with your face and body.
- Take turns posing and taking each other’s picture while posing.
- What is the first word that comes to mind when you look at the work of art?
- What adjective best describes the work of art?
- Is there another artwork in the gallery that could be described the same way?
- Before heading into the galleries, each person chooses a color. Designate one person to be the score keeper.
- While walking around, each person gets a point for spotting their chosen color.
- You can steal points from each other if you spot another person’s color first!
- Make the game harder by picking more obscure colors!