Blog / Family Day with Matisse


By Angie Yu

A week ago, two of my friends and I came to the Nasher Museum on a Sunday afternoon to see Collecting Matisse and Modern Masters: The Cone Sisters of Baltimore. I wondered why the parking lot was so crowded, and as we walked into the museum, the smiling volunteers greeting us answered the question on my mind — We had unintentionally come to the museum on a Free Family Day.

The museum was alive with the buzz of people of all ages – at the craft table, in the exhibits, in the cafe. After viewing the Matisse exhibit, we saw a sign for “Wallpaper Collages.” Feeling inspired, we couldn’t resist checking it out. We entered the room to find several tables set up with bins of various wallpaper scraps, scissors and glue. My friends – twenty-something college seniors – immediately began scavenging the bins for the wallpaper designs they wanted in their collages and intently cut out pieces of regal stripes and vintage-looking hot air balloons. The kids in the room cleared out as they announced that the Barefoot Juggler, the day’s entertainment, was beginning shortly, leaving just my friends and and the volunteers in the room. We spent fifteen minutes in this room as my friends created their collages and when they finished, they proudly held up their masterpieces for me to see.

We didn’t come to the Nasher Museum that day to crash the kids’ table. We came to see some cool works of art and found ourselves with an unexpected opportunity. In those fifteen minutes, my friends didn’t worry about their classes, upcoming exams, the committees they lead – they were just thinking about finding the right pieces and putting them altogether, and no matter how old you are, it’s so rewarding to walk away with something you’ve created.

Sometimes all it takes is a simple hands-on activity to make your day, and that visit will always be one of my favorite museum experiences.

Family Days take place on select Sundays from 12 – 4 PM. On these days families visiting the museum enjoy live entertainment, create hands-on projects and explore exhibitions with a gallery hunt. Made possible in part by Duke Medicine, Nordstrom and RBC Bank.

Upcoming Family Days:
Jan. 27, 2013
March 17, 2013
May 5, 2013

Visit our calendar for additional information. Family Days are supported in part by the Trent A. Carmichael Fund for Community Education, Fox Family Foundation, Nordstrom, Mindy and Guy Solie, and SunTrust Foundation. In-kind support is provided by The Container Store©.

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