Reflections On A Summer Internship at UMOCA

“Hello! Welcome to UMOCA! Have you ever been in before?”   I’ve probably said this phrase at least a hundred times this summer. As an intern, one of my roles is to greet people from behind the front desk. The answers to this question are equally exciting; if the museum-goer says no, you get to […]

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Contemporary Reactions: The Delicate Line Between Nourishment and Destruction

Nestled in a corner of the Main Gallery is UMOCA’s A-I-R Space, an area specially devoted to showcasing UMOCA’s artists-in-residence. Entering the gallery almost feels like entering a secret world, partitioned off and hidden behind encompassing walls. Yet while physically contained in a small space, the A-I-R Space’s current exhibition, Scott Horsley’s I Learned It […]

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Artist Interview: Willow Skye-Biggs

Willow Skye-Biggs’ Tastes Like Mandy is a visceral experience that combines queer visual cues, assembled audio recordings, and dark emotive tones to juxtapose the feelings of ecstasy, disorientation, grounding, and pain. This installation, currently in UMOCA’s Codec Gallery, discusses the peace gained through the struggles of accepting one’s body and understanding one’s identity within an […]

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Contemporary Reactions: An Otherworldly Spectacle

A congregation of umbrellas, weather map projections, and a fabric pedestal holding dry ice as a rainbow of colors washes over it, splashing onto the wall through the cutouts in the cylindrical sculpture await visitors in Michael Ryan Handley’s Sublimation, currently on exhibit in UMOCA’s Street Gallery.  Handley’s unexpected use of digital media, sculpture, fabric […]

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Out Loud 2017 participants take a group photo after the panel.

Q&A with the Out Loud Participants

2017 Out Loud’s Identities, Symbolism, and the Self Three years ago, Elly Baldwin (the Museum’s Curator of Public Engagement) noticed a gap in UMOCA’s community programming: programs for children and adults were offered, but nothing at the time existed for those in-between. After receiving funding from an education grant, Baldwin created a program for LGBTQ+ teens, […]

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Contemporary Reactions: Rueda De Reconocimiento (Lineup)

Victim and Victimizer Switch Roles Walking through UMOCA, there’s no question which current artwork elicits the loudest response from visitors: Rueda De Reconocimiento (Lineup) by Ananké Asseff. Lineup is an interactive video dealing with violence, race, and victimization. Designed to make the viewer feel uncomfortable and unsafe—as so many people of color experience daily simply existing […]

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Rona Pondick | "Dog"

Museum Lighting: How Hard Can It Be?

UMOCA’s Chief Preparator, John Burdick, shares insight on the lighting process of the Museum’s many exhibitions. Museum lighting—how hard can it be? You screw a lightbulb into a thing, plug the thing into an outlet and aim the light at the artwork, right? Yes … sometimes.Every so often, lighting an exhibition is straightforward. I’ll usually […]

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Defining Contemporary Art

What is Contemporary Art? It is astonishing that so many individuals crave a definition for contemporary art, even though it continually permeates our lives! The concepts within contemporary art are what people face on a daily basis, whether it be political, social, cultural, or environmental. Even though Art21 defines contemporary art as “the work of […]

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Contemporary Reactions: A Menagerie of the Human Body

Rona Pondick’s intricate sculptures immediately catch the interest of the Museum’s guests when they walk into the Main Gallery. The sculpture’s human appendages that seamlessly morph with abstract animal bodies examine the body, while also creating parallels to historically and culturally significant pieces of art. Feintuch’s paintings also portray the human body, but in a […]

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The Cardinal Rule: Please Do Not Touch the Art

So you want to touch the art… I understand—art is alluring, especially when it’s constructed with materials that shine, move, swirl, jiggle, or have a thrilling texture. But touching the art causes more damage than most people realize. It is our duty as museum staff to preserve and keep safe the artworks that are displayed […]

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