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Time of Now: History & Memory


  • Archive

  • Saturday, June 26
  • Free with gallery admission
  • Galleries

Time of Now is an in-person and virtual event that explores the relationship between individual memory and collective history, and how the past continues to shape our present reality. Pop-up performances, activities, in-person and virtual talks, and self-guided tours will bring together a group of thinkers, performers, and artists for public events throughout the museum. Featuring programming from Osman Khan, Jimena Sarno and Axel Krygier, Blane De St. Croix, and music students from Drury High School in North Adams.


View a map of Time on Now locations here


DJ Set by Osman Khan in The Road to Hybridabad
Recounting key memories of Pakistan, Osman Khan lists: the smell of his grandmother’s house, the taste of the mangoes, the cacophony of street sounds, and the riotous hyper-graphically decorated trucks. For The Road to Hybridabad, Khan adapted this decorative truck art for the U.S, displaying imagery and messages that reflect the beliefs, aspirations, and cultural markers of the immigrant community. During Time of Now, Khan will use the truck as a stage from which to DJ throughout the afternoon and talk about his work.
(Location: Courtyard D (rain location: Courtyard A)

Performance of taracatá trabaja, composed by Jimena Sarno & Axel Krygier and sung by singers Rosa Evangelina Beltran, Gemma Castro, Vera Lugo, and Molly Pease
On view in Kissing through a Curtain, Jimena Sarno’s taracatá trabaja is at once a sculptural installation and a musical score based on an Argentinean folk song about the hornero, that country’s national bird. The score, which Sarno created in collaboration with Argentinian composer and musician Axel Krygier, centers on the onomatopoeic words taracatá and chapalea: the sounds of working and moving through mud. The composition will be performed by singers Rosa Evangelina Beltran, Gemma Castro, Vera Lugo, and Molly Pease.
(Location: Building 4, second floor)
A video performance of taracatá trabaja is also available to stream on artist Jimena Sarno’s website: click here to watch.

Pop-Up Improvisations, featuring Students from Drury High School
Improvisation builds on embodied memory, creating new experiences that overlay past performances like a palimpsest, finding new places for joy, imagination, and reflection. Throughout the afternoon, we encourage visitors and local musicians to stop by and explore and experiment in The Pipes. A group of music students from Drury High School in North Adams will be bringing their instruments, and intermittently improvising on the themes of remembrance and history from within The Pipes.
(Location: Outdoors in Taryn Simon’s The Pipes)

Starting at 1:30pm
Screenings of How to Move a Landscape: Collaborations in Art and Climate Science
Panel Discussion with Blane De St Croix, Dr. Julie Brigham-Grette, and Tatiana Schlossberg
Blane De St. Croix’s exhibition How to Move a Landscape explores the geopolitical landscape. His research-based practice involves collaborating with writers, scientists, and policy makers to imagine cross-disciplinary approaches to art and climate science. This panel, which will be screened at the museum and also available online, brings together De St. Croix with Dr. Julie Brigham-Grette, a professor in the Department of Geosciences, University of Massachusetts, Amherst; and Tatiana Schlossberg, an award-winning journalist and former New York Times science writer; and is moderated by New York-based writer and critic and senior editor of Cabinet magazine, Jeffrey Kastner.
(Location: Building 11, Swing Space)

This panel discussion will also be available to stream on MASS MoCA’s YouTube channel — tune in here to watch.

Pop-up Talk on The Palms: Alec Soth & Dave King
Photographer Alec Soth collaborates for the first time with drummer/composer Dave King of the jazz duo The Bad Plus. The result: The Palms, a semi-improvised, photo-sharing, new work-in-progress performance that delves into the physicality of memory that’s been lost in our digital age. During Time of Now, Soth and King will have an informal discussion about The Palms, followed by a performance at 8pm (a limited number of tickets for the 8pm performance are available for purchase online here or in-person at MASS MoCA’s box office.)
(Location: Building 4, floor 2)


Pop-Up Artist Talk: Osman Khan
(Location: Courtyard D (rain location: Building 4, floor 2)


Pop-Up Artist Talk: Kameelah Janan Rasheed
For her installation in Kissing through a Curtain, titled Each sentence is a sponge!, artist and educator Kameelah Janan Rasheed considered Xerox machines as translators of historical archives and individual memories. As Rasheed cut up and pieced together texts, new relationships between words and images emerged, opening up space for new (hi)stories. Her talk will encourage visitors to wander through texts, drawing their own playful connections.
(Location: Building 4, second floor)

All Day
Taryn Simon’s The Pipes on View
Taryn Simon’s large-scale outdoor sculpture The Pipes will be on long-term view on the MASS MoCA campus beginning today. The Pipes began as an oversized concrete instrument for a cacophony of global mourning in Simon’s work An Occupation of Loss, where the pipes were activated by both professional mourners and the larger public. At MASS MoCA, Simon has reimagined the 11 structures that make up the installation, offering them to the public as a sacred space for reflection, impromptu play and performance, and stargazing.
(Location: The Speed Way)

All Day
Self-Guided Tour: Memory Itinerary 
Artist Shaun Leonardo offers a series of textual prompts — drawing from themes present in exhibitions on view throughout the museum — to invite us to consider how we process and embody space, ideas, and connectivity. Pick up a self-guided itinerary to locate a series of prompts designed by the artist that are placed throughout the museum. Create sketches and write responses to engage your imagination and recall memories. Check out Leonardo’s You walk… on the second floor of Building 10, Hunter Hallway Mezzanine. (Location: Copies of the itinerary available in Kidspace – Building 10, second floor)

All Day
ArtBar Special: Cellophane Self-Portrait
Visitors of all ages can stop by the ArtBar in Kidspace for an art-making activity, offered in conjunction with Wendy Red Star’s current exhibition, Apsáalooke: Children of the Large-Beaked Bird. Explore Red Star’s work and consider how you want to be represented. In this activity, you will create a self-portrait using colors that represent the values that are important to you.
(Location: Kidspace – Building 10, second floor)

This activity will also be available online on MASS MoCA from Home here.

Osman Khan, The sounds weight in anticipation of their song, hum tum tanana nana, nana nana ray, 2020
Polyurethane foam, wood, fiberglass, taxidermy peacocks, PA speakers, microphones, guitar amp, effects pedals, mixer, speakers, Shruti box, Radel Taalmala Digi-108, Boss DR-202 Dr. Groove, Korg Monologue, Korg Volca FM, Korg Volca Keys, Moog Minitaur, Behringer Model D, vinyl, rugs, par lights, led bar lights, dmx controller, computer, custom software
Courtesy the artist

As installed in the exhibition Kissing through a Curtain (MASS MoCA, 2020).