The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Feb 19, 2013

Artist Mary Fortuna curates a Family Day Workshop at MOCAD

Posted by rsharp

A true inside-art perspective.

While some Metro Detroiters explored their wild side this weekend at The Dirty Show, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (a Knight Arts grantee) was open for wholesome family fun on Sunday with the Family Day Workshop: "Drawing Sculpture in Space." The event was curated by Mary Fortuna, artist and exhibition director for Paint Creek Center for the Arts, and over the course of the day saw participation from more than 100 kids of all ages.

Young sculptors at work Artists at work.

Fortuna described the workshop as an interactive sculpture-building exercise, starting at 12 p.m. from the framework of a circle of ladders. Over the course of four hours, the event's attendees built onto the bare bones by stringing and tying yarn, ribbon and other craft materials that completely filled the café space in a riot of shapes and colors. From above, the configuration created a transparent Big-Top, from below, a chaotic spider web over a kid-level crawl space alive with young sculptors.

Artist Mary Fortuna presiding over the event Artist Mary Fortuna presiding over the event.

The day’s work bore indirect but loose relation to Fortuna’s own art, which combines doll-making, sculpture, drawing and installation work which appears, as a body of work that spans more than two decades, to be the cultural artifacts of an imaginary (and imaginative) native society. She has been active in the Detroit art community for many years, serving on the Forum for Contemporary Art at the DIA, and on the exhibition committees for the Detroit Artist Market, Detroit Focus and Paint Creek Center for the Arts.

Art as a family affair Art as a family affair.

If you’d like to get your family in on the fun at MOCAD, the next Family Day Workshop is scheduled for Sunday, March 17, from 12-4 p.m. – “Let’s Make Stuff” with Julia Klein. Admission is free.

Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, 4454 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-832-6622;

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