When you hear the words Art Museum what comes to mind? Quiet, old, cold, boring!? (Or at least that’s probably what my husband would say). And the thought of bringing the children along just sounds, well, expensive!! Let’s be honest, there is decorum to follow when touring the Art Museum’s galleries. Things they frown upon include, breathing near the art (again, something my husband would probably say, ha-ha!), touching the art, standing too close to the art, climbing on the art, sitting on the art, and playing with the art. But not this summer! This summer the Toledo Museum of Art is hosting Play Time!!!
“As we grow up we tend to trivialize play and relegate it to childhood, but it’s an important element of life that we wanted to explore in this exhibition,” said Halona Norton-Westbrook, the Museum’s Mellon fellow and associate curator of contemporary art. “This show is not only about play in the traditional sense, but also the idea of being in the moment, of inspiring wonder, of invoking your natural curiosity.”
Invoking your natural curiosity, that statement is spot on! Our adventure in Play Time began downstairs where we contributed to the community art project featuring interactive components designed by Varujan Boghosian and Werner Pfeiffer. How it worked?
There was paper provided and directions for making a paper cube. Full disclosure, it took me WAY too long to try and figure out how to make that cube. Haha!
That exercise did a marvelous job of setting the tone for the rest of our Play Time tour. What tone? One of lightheartedness, fun, we were definitely forced into the moment! I loved it! And the coolest part is we can now say that we contributed to an instillation at the Toledo Museum of Art….that’ll look great on my résumé. (wink, wink).
Then we made our way upstairs to what I can only describe as pure awesomeness, Harmonic Motion!! Harmonic Motion, by, Toshiko Horiuchi Macadam and Charles Richard MacAdam is a hand-crocheted textile installation. It is huge, colorful, just a sight to behold!
As we entered they requested that we take our shoes off before climbing in. What!? It was difficult to wrap my head around the fact that I was not only taking my shoes off at the Art Museum but was also climbing on, in, around, and breathing ALL over the art!! Finally an exhibit my husband will happily accompany me too!! Talk about a FUN date night!!
Next stop, Swing Space! Swing Space, by, Jillian Mayer was a really cool idea; you literally sit and swing into the clouds which are projected onto the wall. It was a neat experience. I can finally cross off swing at the Art Museum from my bucket list!!
Ground Control by, Edith Dekyndt was our next destination on our Play Time adventure! This one was a little eerie. You walk into an empty room that contains a huge floating black ball. The ball is filled with a combination of oxygen and helium and the reaction is surprising. I won’t give it away, this one you will have to check out for yourself!
Anything Can Break, by, Pinaree Sanpitak was one of our last stops. Truth be told, we have already visited this installation a few times but it is one of our favorites!! There are motion sensors in the ceiling of the installation that trigger various sounds as you walk underneath. It is so much fun to walk around and see what kind of music you can make.
There are so many more instillations in the exhibit. There are also fun hands-on activities placed throughout the museum…gone are the days of old, cold, and boring!
Fun events are going on throughout the summer at the Toledo Museum of Art. Click here to view the calendar. Also, be sure to check out the Toledo Museum of Art’s amazing Family Center while you are there!
Now, if you’ll excuse me I have an awesome date night to plan….It’s Friday at the Toledo Museum of Art!