After 7 months, Worcester Art Museum reopens

Posted on October 2, 2020 by

It’s been a long time — almost seven months to be exact — since fans of the Worcester Art Museum have been able to see art up close at the popular venue. But that changes on Wednesday, October 7 when it reopens to the public for the first time since its March 13th pandemic shut-down. 

  “We’re very grateful to our members, sponsors, donors and foundations — and our generous Worcester community — for supporting us during our closure,” said WAM director Matthias Waschek. “While visiting this fall and winter will look and feel different in order to keep everyone safe, the museum’s phenomenal collection of art and its power to heal and comfort, will be here for all to enjoy. We can’t wait to see our community here again.”

  The museum is open Wednesdays, noon-4 p.m.; Thursdays-Sundays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.; third Thursdays, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. and on Columbus Day, Monday, October 12, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

   It is implementing safety protocols following state and local guidelines and asks that all visitors adhere to them in planning their visits. 

  These include reserving or purchasing timed tickets in advance. Maximum group size is 5 visitors. All staff and visitors, age five and older, must wear a mask or cloth face covering while in the museum. Six feet of physical distance must be maintained between themselves and others outside their party, including museum employees. All visitors must enter and exit through the Salisbury Street entrance which is fully accessible.

  An array of exhibits on view for visitors to explore include “Beyond Midnight: Paul Revere,” offering a revolutionary perspective on the artistic production of this important American patriot, as well as his entrepreneurial and creative spirit, on view through November 7. 

  Also on view is Vincent van Gogh’s 1888 “Portrait of Postman Roulin,” on loan from the Detroit Institute of Arts and hanging next to the WAM’s “The Brooding Woman (Te Faaturuma)” by 

Paul Gaugin, a van Gogh contemporary and fellow post-Impressionist. The pairing allows viewers to explore the impact of these art titans.

  Viewers will also enjoy the solo show “Nature Imagined by Susan Swinand.” The winner of the Sally R. Bishop Best in Show Prize at the 2019 ArtsWorcester Biennial, Swinand is a longtime faculty member in the WAM’s studio program and her work is widely shown around central New England.

  WAM will present “Kimono Couture: The Beauty of Chiso” in a virtual format beginning in late November. It will also hold several free virtual programs this fall, including Zip Zoom Tours, Arms and Armor Presentations, a Fall Community Day and Master Series Third Thursday Art Talks. Dates, details and participation links will be posted on www.worcesterart.org. The WAM is also offering online studio art and art history classes for adults and youth. Class and registration info is at portal.worcesterart.org/classes.

Gallery notes: 

LNHP UPDATE: If you’re heading to the Lowell National Historical Park to soak up some industrial revolution history this fall or winter, you’ll find the Visitor Center on Market Street shut down. They’re doing renovations to mechanical systems and will reopen next spring. But not to worry. You’ll find maps and other visitor information at the Boott Cotton Mills Museum, 115 John Street, which will be open daily, except for major holidays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. And starting today the Tsongas Industrial History Center will be offering virtual field trips. The first two are about “Mill Girls” and “Immigrants.” They last about 45 minutes and align with social studies and/or science standards. Call 978-970-5080 to reserve a date and time.

ICONIC SHOW: “Playground of the Autocrats,” an exhibition by contemporary artist and historian Anne Bobroff-Hajal, is on view October 4-January 24 at the Museum of 

Russian Icons in Clinton. Her work draws from the visual languages of iconography and graphic art to create a large-scale visual commentary on Russian socio-political history. Her detailed and whimsical visual stories symbolize the powerful human motivations of love, greed, grief, competition and fury, shaped by the geographic landscapes in which those humans live. Notes the artist: “My extensively researched satirical works about Russia revel in the crazy-quilt intersection of art with academic history and geography.” She’ll participate in a virtual panel discussion with M.I.T. professor Elizabeth Wood on Saturday, November 21 at 1 p.m. Free to members; $5, nonmembers. Registration required by Friday, November 20 and Zoom link will be sent on morning of program. Visit www.museumofrussianicons.org/event/playground.

PEM THIS FALL: Salem’s Peabody-Essex Museum is going full-speed ahead this fall with several provocative new exhibitions that examine the local and global. From the Salem Witch Trials of 1692 to women’s often-overlooked contributions to the fashion and design industry to its extensive collection of Indian art made before and after British occupation, a total of seven new exhibits will inspire conversation about creativity and culture. Visit www.pem.org for details, dates and info.

Nancye Tuttle’s email address is nancyedt@verizon.net

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