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Free Day 2019


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  • Saturday, January 26, 2019, 11am-7pm

We’ll amplify your MASS MoCA experience when we throw open the doors to the museum for free and fill the galleries with art-making activities, lively discussion, and pop-up performance. Create some art, take a tour, catch some live music in the elevator, and learn about the history of our life on Marshall Street.

11:30am & 1pm – History Talks, Club B10
Join MASS MoCA’s director Joeseph Thompson for a talk about the history of the MASS MoCA site, spanning more than 200 hundred years of economic, industrial, and architectural change.

11:45am & 12:45pm – Youth Alive Performance, B6: The Robert W. Wilson Building 2nd floor

12-3pm – History Harvest, Spencer Finch: Cosmic Latte
Bring your MASS MoCA, Sprague Electric, Arnold Printworks, or other North Adams-related related ephemera and artifacts for a history harvest. A program of the MCLA History Department and Historic North Adams, objects or photos will be scanned and saved in an online digital archive. Dig through your closets and drawers if you’re holding:

  • Photographs of previous MASS MoCA exhibitions
  • Printed material like saved tickets, brochures, membership cards, maps, etc.
  • Journals or sketches made during a museum visit
  • Printed material, photos, or artifacts from the Sprague Electric or Arnold Printworks eras
  • Any other memorabilia related to MASS MoCA, Sprague, Arnold Printworks, or North Adams

All materials will be scanned while you wait. If you can’t make it on Free Day, participate by posting pictures to hashtag #MMHistoryHarvest

12-4pm – Photo Booth, Sol LeWitt: A Wall Drawing Retrospective

12-4pm – Lickety Split Cafe
Try the Sprague Specials, select items from the 1980s Sprague cookbook, a compilation of recipes contributed by factory employees. Available for purchase in the cafe.

1:30pm & 2:30pm – Curator-Led Gallery Talks, Taryn Simon
Join Associate Curator Alexandra Foradas for two public talks on the social history of applause, and on the scientific, historical, and religious context of cold-water immersion.

2:45pm – Berkshire Dance Theater Performance, B6: The Robert W. Wilson Building 2nd floor

3pm & 4pm – Curator-Led Gallery Talk
Find out what’s next for MASS MoCA’s largest exhibition space, Building 5. Senior Curator Denise Markonish tells all about upcoming exhibition Trenton Doyle Hancock: Mind of the Mound: Critical Mass.

3pm – Making Memories in North Adams Presentation, Spencer Finch: Cosmic Latte
Students from Drury High School’s E3 Academy interviewed long-term residents of North Adams and collected their memories of the city. Compiled by the students into a handmade book, the residents’ stories will be presented to the North Adams Public Library and the North Adams Historical Society. Stop by to listen as students read excerpts from the book and bring history to life!

3-6pmAssets for Artists Open Studios
The Studios at MASS MoCA is joining in the fun with an extended Open Studios starting at 3pm. Swing by the Studios after a free visit to the museum to catch work in progress by the newest artists in residence.

All Day
Art-making for all ages and live elevator music.

Free Day Tour Schedule
Tours depart from the information desk.

  • 11:30am Jenny Holzer
  • 12pm Sol LeWitt
  • 12:30pm Thumbs Up for the Mothership
  • 1pm The Lure of the Dark
  • 1pm Curator-led Tour
  • 1:30pm History Tour
  • 1:30pm Sol LeWitt
  • 2pm History Tour
  • 2pm Curator-led Tour
  • 2:30pm The Lure of the Dark
  • 2:30pm Curator-led Tour
  • 3pm Thumbs Up for the Mothership
  • 3:30pm The Lure of the Dark
  • 4pm History Tour

What to Expect
Plan to spend the day! You’ll find pop-up music performances, a Sol LeWitt photo booth, art projects for the entire family happening throughout the museum, and dance performances in the galleries. Triptych, beginning at 8pm, will be a fantastic opportunity to see art being made on stage, as MASS MoCA favorite Roomful of Teeth joins friends to explore the art of Robert Mapplethorpe, featuring an original score by Bryce Dessner of The National.

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