Play Time: TMA to host interactive exhibit Memorial through Labor DayWritten by Sarah Ottney | Editor in Chief | email@example.com
Toledo Museum of Art (TMA) wants the whole city to come out and play this summer.
From May 22 to Sept. 6, Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend, TMA will host “Play Time,” a series of playful, interactive pieces that invite visitors to climb, swing, bounce and channel their inner child. Admission is free.
Featured works will change throughout the summer. Some will even switch locations, like “RedBall Project,” a massive inflated red ball that artist Kurt Perschke will place in unexpected spaces throughout the city. Perschke has visited Toledo and chosen several locations to place the ball during its 10-day display in August. The same ball has previously appeared in Abu Dhabi, UAE; Taipei, Taiwan; Toronto; Paris and other cities around the globe.
“The idea behind it is to activate spaces that are otherwise not activated and draw attention to architectural details,” said co-curator Halona Norton-Westbrook, associate curator of contemporary art. “It’s more about a performance piece and how it engages people.”
The exhibit’s most elaborate piece will be “Harmonic Motion,” a massive hand-crocheted hanging net that will fill Canaday Gallery, allowing visitors to clamber over it like a giant, multi-sensory playground.
“This is the showstopper,” Norton-Westbrook said. “It’s not just for kids, but for adults too.”
“Swing Space,” by artist Jillian Mayer, is designed to make visitors feel like they are floating.
“It’s a projection of clouds against a wall with swings in front of it,” Norton-Westbrook said. “You swing on the swings and the clouds are animated so it feels like you’re swinging in the sky.”
Edith Dekyndt’s “Ground Control” features a black ball filled with helium that moves in reaction to viewers in the gallery.
“It rises and falls and actually responds to visitors and the number of visitors in the room,” Norton-Westbrook said. “It has a playful quality to it.”
Chicago’s Redmoon Theater, known for performing with and on larger-than-life contraptions, will visit TMA on June 13.
“They are going to do a major performance out on the terrace with a drum crane,” Norton-Westbrook said. “It’s going to be a real spectacle and really spectacular.”
Also part of the exhibit will be:
- June 16-21: Marathon reading of James Joyce’s “Ulysses.”
- Community bike rides (“Bicycle Music,” June 20; “Wheels of History,” July 25; “Neighborhoods,” Aug. 22).
- Aug. 6-9: Films of Jacque Tati.
- Aug. 15: Music Marathon: The Complete String Quartets of Dmitri Shostakovich, $15.
“Being ‘in the moment’ can be a challenge in adulthood, and these works really demand that of viewers,” said co-curator Amy Gilman, TMA associate director, on the exhibit’s website. “They physically and mentally engage you in a way that’s very lighthearted, and that’s the aim.”
TMA is located at 2445 Monroe St. For more information, visit playtime.toledomuseum.org.