Gallery game for 2 or more players: "Yes, And..."

Gallery game for 2 or more players: "Yes, And..."

If you're looking for new ways to engage with art with your kids, the PMA can offer many proven techniques to get kids and adults thinking critically, having fun, and learning more—about art, and each other. This gallery game is called "yes, and...". We've used it with students and children visitors to great success.

Suggested artworks:

George Wesley Bellows, Matinicus
2nd Floor, Gallery #208

Bernard Langlais, Animal Farm
4th Floor, Gallery #401

Take a few moments to quietly look at the artwork. After you’ve had a chance to take it all in, the grown-up should make a comment about the work. It could be about the subject matter, the technique, an opinion about the artwork, or an emotional reaction to the artwork (examples: "this painting has so many animals" or "this painting makes me feel happy." The next person (child or adult) continues by saying, "Yes, and…. <inserts their own comment>." Continue taking turns with saying “Yes, and...”  until you feel you have exhausted the conversation and all the details of the artwork.

Why should you try this game?
This is a tried-and-true game used in improvisational theater. It encourages the players to accept a variety of ideas and opinions and build upon them. It can also help one discover details or interpretations they have not yet had themselves. You will notice the word "no" is not involved—that is because there are no right or wrong observations when it comes to looking at art. Therefore, this exercise validates and encourages opinions and observations regardless of age, knowledge about art, or any other factor.

Add comment

Filtered HTML

  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <blockquote> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
June 8, 2017
Associate Educator for Youth Learning

Louisa, a Portland resident, has worked in museum and arts education for 10 years. She believes in the transformative power of art and that everyone has something to teach and has something to learn. When designing and implementing programs, she aims to use art as a vehicle to encourage empathy and social bridging, and to foster deep, intergenerational communication. A graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, she enjoys honing her own artistic practice, and spending time outside with her husband Nick and baby daughter, Colette.