Join us for our fifth annual Frances Day, a community open house from 2 to 6 pm on Saturday, July 14. Visitors can experience multiple contemporary art exhibitions, art-making activities, tours, food, music, and more in honor of the museum’s namesake, Frances Young Tang, Skidmore College Class of 1961.
2 to 5 pm: Drop-in activities include printmaking with artist Kamau Amu Patton, photo diorama with Wendy Red Star and Beatrice Red Star Fletcher, button-making, sun visor decorating, a collaborative two-sided pegboard and yarn artwork, giveaways, and more
2 pm: Behind-the-Scenes Collections Tour with Senior Museum Registrar Elizabeth Karp and Collections Registrar Jessica Lubniewski
3 pm: Curator’s tour of the exhibition Give a damn. with Mellon Collections Curator Rebecca McNamara
4 pm: Dona Nelson: Stand Alone Paintings gallery tour with Dayton Director Ian Berry and artist Dona Nelson
5 pm: Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra perform on the lawn
All events are free and open to the public.
Visitors to this year’s Frances Day will have numerous opportunities to interact with artists whose work is exhibited in the museum.
Wendy Red Star is an artist who was raised on the Apsáalooke (Crow) reservation in Montana and currently lives and works in Portland, Oregon. Her four-part photographic series The Four Seasons will be on view in the exhibition Give a damn. The series shows her dressed in Crow regalia in settings (one for each season) that feature Astroturf, painted backdrops, and other artificial items like an inflatable elk. For Frances Day, Red Star and her daughter, Beatrice Red Star Fletcher, will design and set up a new diorama in which visitors will be posed and have their photograph taken by the artists. They will use a Polaroid camera and give the photographs to the visitors.
Kamau Amu Patton is the featured artist on the Tang’s mezzanine and has been asked to re-imagine what a museum community space can be. His response is Tel_, which takes its name from the archeological term for an artificial mound formed by the accumulated remains of people living on the same site for hundreds of years. Tel_ is an examination of history (memory) considered as layers, strata, residue. Tel_ is an archive. Tel_ is an open document, a conversation, a dialogic construct. In that spirit, the artist will lead visitors in a printmaking project. Visitors will be able to make new prints and take them home.
Dona Nelson and Dayton Director Ian Berry will lead a gallery tour of the artist’s career survey, Dona Nelson: Stand Alone Paintings. The exhibition presents a range of artworks from 1983 to 2017 to demonstrate the breadth and continuity of Nelson’s influential painting career. Organized by Berry in collaboration with Nelson, the exhibition brings together a group of her gestural and large-scale canvases from both public and private collections to form a vibrant and immersive installation.
Visitors will also be able to engage in art-making activities inspired by the work on view in the museum. In addition to button making and visor decorating, visitors can join in the creation of a collaborative two-sided artwork inspired by Dona Nelson’s two-sided paintings. The collaborative artwork will be created by threading yarn of various colors through a pegboard, allowing visitors to create abstract images on both sides.
Visitors will also be able to sign up for giveaways of Tang-related prizes, including private museum tours, exhibition catalogs, CDs, and more.
Frances Young Tang was a businesswoman, philanthropist, and 1961 Skidmore College graduate who died in 1992. In her memory, the Tang family made a substantial donation that led to the Tang Teaching Museum becoming a reality in 2000. Frances Day honors Frances Young Tang’s legacy of creativity and philanthropy with a day of free activities.