Jaimie Warren is the creative force behind some of today’s most playful, beautiful, and viscerally beguiling video, performance, and photography projects. When Adam Parker Smith and I reached out to her last year to come in as a guest artist for our I Am a God: Artists, Obsession & the Cult of Celebrity Culture course, we immediately saw that she was the perfect collaborator and mentor for our community of young artists.
Posts by Calder Zwicky
How does artwork created within a specific cultural and political context connect with viewers across multiple generations and disparate locations? How can an institution remain relevant to contemporary audiences while maintaining a commitment to preserving and championing artwork from past generations? Shellyne Rodriguez and Kerry Downey are two longtime teaching artists working with MoMA’s Community and Access Programs who, in addition to their work across a wide range of educational groups, both run the majority of the Museum’s Community Partnerships
Where do you start when describing this past season of MoMA’s In the Making program, offering free art and technology courses to an ever-evolving community of NYC high school students each spring and summer? We could begin with the first day of classes, perhaps, when the hundred or so new participants make their way to the Museum for the first studio session, many walking through our doors for the first time ever. The young artists in Destroy Everything: Tearing Things Down & Building Things Up began the season with a very appropriate introduction to their theme.
As the person who oversees the creation of MoMA’s teen-created, teen-directed online art courses, I have always been interested in the visual language of contemporary short-form videos—the look and feel of the TV shows and Web series that our audiences are looking at and talking about on their own time. When we work with our teens to create their videos, we almost invariably end up making comedic pieces—not straightforward sitcom-styled comedy but a more complicated, deliberately awkward, absurdist kind of abstract humor.
This summer’s In the Making program brought an incredibly diverse group of over 85 NYC teens into contact with a range of artists and arts organizations, for a series of six-week intensive art programs. Perhaps our most ambitious project ever, this summer’s collaboration with Babycastles, a non-profit video game-based gallery and arts collective, saw 23 teens working together on the creation of a fully-functional arcade, mural, and sculptural art installation.
Even after years of creating weird and off-kilter art courses for teens, one of the darkest and strangest teen art courses we’ve ever offered might very well be last season’s Under the Spell of Mysterious Forces: Magic, Illusion, and Performance Based Art. Taking the young participants deep into a realm where magic, trance, and extrasensory perception mingle with performance art, the course attracted a range of curious open-minded teens, all wiling to take the plunge into the artistic unknown.
Every year, we bring hundreds of NYC teens through our studio doors to take part in dozens of free hands-on art-making programs. From In the Making to the MoMA + MoMA PS1 Cross-Museum Collective to our recently created Digital Advisory Board, we are constantly looking to find new ways of engaging young audiences
Last year’s Cross-Museum Collective was a whirlwind of incredible, art-related experiences, from behind-the-scenes tours of MoMA’s Security Department (thanks LJ!) to hanging out with the conservation staff (thanks Roger!) to spending week after week exploring the galleries of MoMA PS1 and the spectacular work there—it’s insane just how much we were able to accomplish.
Alya Albert, 19, is an alumnus of our In the Making teen arts program and a second-year Cross-Museum Collective member. On Sunday May 19, she and the other CMC teens, under the guidance of artist Ryan McNamara, created a series of in-gallery performances and provocations at MoMA PS1.
Kerry Downey and Douglas Paulson, two artists who use collaboration as the basis of much of their own work, are the creative forces behind this season’s In the Making course for teens titled Clubs, Gangs, and Secret Societies: The Art of Working Collaboratively. For the past six weeks, they’ve been leading their collective of NYC youths through a variety of projects and activities exploring the history and philosophy surrounding artists working together in order to create collaborative art.
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