January 2012 L.A. Museum Events for Kids and Adults

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My New Year’s resolution this year?  Not that different from last year really — go out and do more fun, creative, and artful activities. And not just with my kids. This year, I want to have more museum outings with my husband and friends too.  That’s why I’m adding a list of grown-up events to my monthly events calendar. Here are my January top picks for kids and adults.

My Picks for Kids:
Year of the Dragon/Family Festivals:  The Hammer marks the closing of its Pacific Standard Time (PST) exhibition Now Dig This! with a Free Family Day on Saturday, 1/7 — a day of art activities and workshops led by contemporary artists and educators. Families can also celebrate the Chinese lunar New Year at the Pacific Asia Museum’s (PAM) Year of the Dragon Celebration (1/14), and the Huntington’s Welcoming the Dragon: Chinese Cultural Arts Celebration (1/15).  Both programs offer an array of traditional Chinese cultural activities and performances including colorful dragon dances, and at PAM there’ll even be Sumo wrestling and Chinese food trucks.

Kids Workshops:  Don’t miss LACMA’s Family Sunday workshop Circle of Animals which explores renowned Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s Zodiac Heads outdoor sculptures (Sundays). Also not to be missed, the Huntington’s Citrus Scientists (1/21) kids workshop featuring lab experiments and a hike through historic orange groves, and the Hammer’s kids class on Tabletop Moviemaking (1/22). The Fowler kicks off a new monthly world music series Family Jam with an African Rhythm workshop (1/22), and the Skirball starts a new family Drop-in Art Studio workshop on the last Saturday (1/28) and Sunday (1/29) of every month.

Martin Luther King Day, Monday, January 16:  There are several museum family events commemorating civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. this year.  On Sunday (1/15), the Autry’s Exploring Civil Rights program includes a storytelling activity with members of the Ninth and Tenth Cavalry Association, which was a segregated African-American unit of the U.S. Army known as the Buffalo Soldiers.

No plans for the school holiday? On Monday (1/16), there’s a Kidspace  MLK Day Lending Hands event and a LACMA Target Free Holiday MLK family program.  In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr., the Annenberg Space for Photography is opening their doors on Monday (1/16 ) — the whole family will enjoy its new Digital Darkroom exhibition featuring artists from around the world who explore the intersection between art and technology (including a 3D short film).  The Getty VillaMOCA, and the Huntington are open on Mondays and make fun family outings as well.

Coming Up:  Registration is open for LACMA art classes for kids and teens; and  LACMA’s Spring Art Camp (April 2-6) for kids ages 6-9 and 10-13. Both sell out quickly, so register now. The Skirball’s Noah’s Ark Family Sleepover  (ages 6+ with an adult) is next month, Saturday, February 18-19.  Tickets available now online.

My Picks for Adults:
Opening Receptions:  Exhibition evening receptions make interesting and inexpensive nights out — they’re free to members which is another good reason to join and support your favorite museum. Why not attend one of these openings instead of your usual dinner/movie date; SMMoA’s opening reception for the NY/LA project series (1/13), and  CAFAM’s opening reception for two new exhibitions (1/28). Or go to the Hammer’s Now Dig This! Bash (January 6-8) and celebrate the closing of the museum’s successful PST exhibition with late night gallery viewing, DJ set, cash bar, and free admission.

Live Performances: I saw some remarkable performances when I was researching L.A. performance art in the 90’s for my master’s thesis. But by far one of the most riveting was by Butoh dance master Oguri. That’s why I’ve already made reservations to see  Kalpa at the Getty Center (1/20).  Oguri will be performing in this site-specific sculptural and performative piece that will transform the Tram Arrival Plaza with an enormous spotlight, Butoh dancers, and hundreds of spools of colorful thread.

Adult Classes: Museum classes are great opportunities to learn about art and meet new people.  Grab a friend, spouse, or significant other and try one of LACMA’s art history and studio art classes  or a Norton Simon drawing courses starting this month. The Getty Villa’s Saturday afternoon course Things You Never Knew about the Romans (1/14) sounds fun too.

I  hope you’ll attend some of these museum events because I really do believe that art enriches our lives in immeasurable ways.  And if you like this calendar be sure to subscribe (click above) and share it with your friends. Also, follow me on Twitter for event updates and tweets and about my museum adventures.  Below you’ll find detailed listings of all January kids activities for each museum.  Happy New Year!

Autry Museum
M.L.K. FAMILY DAY: Exploring Equal Rights
Sunday, January 15: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

Craft and Folk Art Museum (CAFAM)
FAMILY WORKSHOP : Paper Theater CraftLab (All ages)
Saturday, January 14: drop-in between 1:30-3:30

Getty Center Museum
FAMILY DRAWING: Put Your Best Face Forward 
Saturday, January 7: 3:30 pm.  Ages 7+

FAMILY DRAWING: Exploring Color
Saturday, January 14: 3:30 pm. Ages 7+

Saturdays and Sundays: 2:00 and 2:30 pm. Ages 5+

KIDS iPod AUDIO GUIDE : Demons, Angels, and Monsters (see earlier post)
Offered daily (closed Mondays).  Free (through February 5, 2012). All ages.

KIDS ACTIVITY SPACE: The Family Room  (see earlier post)
A place for families to draw, build, read, and play together.
Daily (closed Mondays). Drop-in.

Getty Villa Museum
GALLERY TOUR ACTIVITY: Art Odyssey for Families 
Saturdays and Sundays: 2 pm.  Ages 5+

Daily (closed Tuesday). Drop-in.

Fowler Museum at UCLA
FAMILY WORKSHOP: Turtles, Turtles, Everywhere!
Sunday, January 8: 1-4 pm, drop-in. All ages

FAMILY MUSICAL ACTIVITY: Shake, Rattle, and Roll with African Rhythm
Sunday, January 22: 2–4 pm.  All ages

Hammer Museum
FAMILY FESTIVAL: Now Dig This! Free Family Day
Saturday, January 7: 11 am.  All ages

FREE FAMILY FLICK: Film documentary Babies
Sunday, January 8: 11 am.  Ages 3+

KIDS WORKSHOP:  Tabletop Moviemaking
Sunday, January 22: 12 pm.  Ages 10-14

The Huntington
FESTIVAL: Welcoming the Dragon: Chinese Cultural Arts Celebration
Sunday, January 15: 10:30 am-4:30 pm

KID’S WORKSHOP: Citrus Scientists
Saturday, January 21: 10 am-12:30 pm.  Ages 7-12.  Fee/Registration required.

KID’S WORKSHOP: Dragon Flower Arrangements
Saturday, January 21: 1-3 pm.  Ages 7-12. Fee/Registration required.

KID’S WORKSHOP:  Chinese Brush Painting
Saturday, January 28: 10 am-12:30 pm.  Ages 7-12.  Fee/Registration required.

INTERACTIVE ACTIVITY: Discovery Cart: Mobile hands-on family activities
Saturdays and Sundays: 12:30-3:30 pm, drop-in.

Kidspace Children’s Museum
Monday, January 16: 1:30 pm

KIDS WORKSHOP:  Seashell Scuplture
Sunday, January 8: 2:00 pm.  Ages 6-10

FAMILY WORKSHOP: Circle of Animals
Sundays, January 8, 15, 22, 29: 12:30 pm

TARGET FREE HOLIDAY: Martin Luther King, JR. Day
Monday, January 16: 12-8 pm

STORYTELLINGBoone’s Children’s Gallery
Mondays and Fridays: 2 pm

BOONE CHILDREN’S GALLERY: Korean painting activity studio (see earlier post)
Daily (closed Wednesdays), drop-in.  All ages.

Museum of Latin American Art (Molaa)
FREE FAMILY DAY:  Art workshops and guided tours
January 15: 11 am- 5 pm

Norton Simon Museum
FAMILY ART NIGHT:  Colorful Trees
Friday, January 13: 6:30-7:30 pm.  Ages 4-10

Saturday, January 14: 2:00-3:30 pm. Ages 8-13.  Registration required.

FAMILY WORKSHOP: Fantastic Flowers
Saturday, January 21: 1-3 pm.  Ages 4-8

Sunday, January 29: 2-3 pm.  Ages 4-8

Pacific Asia Musem
FAMILY FESTIVAL:  Year of the Dragon Celebration
Saturday, January 14: 11 am – 5 pm

Santa Monica Museum of Art (SMMoA) – there are no family programs this month.

Skirball Cultural Center
MAGIC PERFORMANCES: Spellbinding Sundays
Sunday, January 8: Intermittently 12-2 pm.  All ages. 

FAMILY ART ACTIVITY: Drop-in Family Art Studio
Saturday & Sunday, January 28-29: drop-in, last entry at 4:30 pm. All ages.

Simulated archaeological dig.  Saturday-Sunday. All ages.

Daily (closed Monday). Special admission fee. 


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