Playful Galleries: Explore the Senses in a New Way

Meet the performers who are experimenting in the Carnegie Museum of Art.

All summer long, two performance groups are taking inspiration from the art on view at the Carnegie Museum of Art to create interactive programs that explore the senses with visitors. The new initiative — called Performers at Play — hosts slowdanger, a movement performance group, and City of Play, an experimental carnival that produces playful experiences.

“It’s really exciting,” says Manager of Social Engagement Laura Zorch McDermit, who oversees the program. “The performers have dreamed up some incredible ideas that challenge what visitors have come to expect in the museum. We’re able to engage different senses and encourage types of interaction in a completely new way.”

The initiative is a complement to “Access+Ability,” an exhibition of the latest breakthroughs in accessible design in the Heinz Galleries. Using movement, drawing and sound, the interactive events bring people of varying abilities together, inspiring connections with each other and with the artwork in the galleries. 

City of Play hosts games, drawing exercises and social ceremonies (role-playing productions inspired by the museum) throughout the summer months, while slowdanger focuses on movement and sound in their programming. These events lead up to a dual performance at the Third Thursday in September, a themed, monthly late-night event that invites local artists to collaborate with the museum. 

“This program speaks directly to our mission of connecting people to art, ideas and each other,” says McDermit. “We’re excited to explore the boundaries of interactivity with everyone who visits.”

Upcoming Events
Emotional Landscapes
July 10, 12, 13, 17, 19
2–4 p.m.
Free with admission; registration required
Sit with an illustrator as she turns your emotions into a drawing you can take home!

Subtle Viewing
July 22–27
12–3 p.m.
Free with admission
Discover slowdanger performing throughout the galleries as they interpret artworks in the collection.

Resonant Body
Debuts in August
An experimental dance technology that allows the audience to feel the vibration of the dancer’s movement.

Third Thursday
September 19
8–11 p.m.
$10 ($5 for students)
Performers at Play culminates in a dual performance from slowdanger and City of Play.

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