March 09, 2021
LOCATION: 144 West Main Street, Waterbury, CT 06702WEBSITE: mattmuseum.org HOURS: Monday-Saturday11am-5pm and Sunday 11am-4pm with extended hours on Thursdays until 7pm – Now open for timed-ticket admission
Hello again! After about a year of chaos I am grateful to be connecting with everyone through a medium that we would find hard to live without, the internet. And as we all know well, things can change quickly and without much notice. The world we lived in a year ago is different now, and so, we must adapt accordingly. Viewing art is no exception. With the use of the internet, we now have the opportunity to become even better art enthusiasts and students, starting in our own neighborhoods but extending out to museums across the globe.
There is so much engaging content out there right now, that I want to take some time to review and think about all the new ways we can interact with art from the comforts of home. But to be honest, I miss visiting art in person very much. It’s one of the reasons I became an art framer to begin with. No matter the level of skill or importance of a work, it’s humbling to be with someone’s art. Even when I know nothing about who made it, or why it was made, I can enjoy the connection to another maker based on the simple idea that someone spent time making a thing where just moments earlier it never existed. That tangibility of art draws me in and keeps me close.
But as it turns out, there are some other ways to feed that craving and make a connection. Many museums have stretched the very notion of what on-line content can provide in connecting with their patrons. At the least, they taunt us with a desire for the next time we can visit, but at the most they are deep wells of knowledge. Their on-line libraries expand from film to guided meditative reflections and more imagery than even the finest curator could ever need.
My first dive will be into the Mattatuck Museum. I was looking through their “Calendar of Events” when I found a program called “Mindfulness Through Art”. It’s a guided 45-minute zoom class with a Yoga instructor every Friday and most Mondays from 11am-12pm. Their website describes the class as “Interact[ing] with art in a different way as you learn to slow down and focus.” For many of us, including myself, the simple idea of slowing down and focusing sounds great. However, in practice, it may not come as easily. That’s why I’ll be giving it a try this Friday! If you want to join too, follow this link.
I would like to point out “The MATT @ Home” section of their website. Here you will find about 15 different live links that take you anywhere from The Flood of ‘55 to Woman’s Suffrage. Each link has interesting articles and imagery written by the museum staff. From each page they provide even more links to “Other Resources” that have related content. Truly, the open-source knowledge and interesting content is endless. It’s guaranteed to provide you with inspiration to keep making art.
From the Mattatuck Museum website I was also reminded of the CT Art Trail. For those unfamiliar, it’s a one-time purchase ($25) for admissions to (20+) different museums and historical sites across Connecticut. Normally you have 1 year, but there is an extension in place since many of the museums still have limited visiting hours. At each museum that you visit, they will stamp your CT Art Trail Passport. It’s a wonderful way to challenge yourself into exploring some new Connecticut gems, not to mention it will likely pay for itself after just two visits! Additionally, from the CT art trail website, you can go down many rabbit holes into tons of virtual tours and other great content. Happy Browsing!
By Julie Weaver
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