Although New York City is in the initial stages of stirring back to life, it will still be a while before the city's art museums follow suit. The Metropolitan Museum Of Art was the first to announce that it was closing due to Covid-19, and, last month, it was the first to declare that it would re-open with limited hours in mid-August or early September. In the meantime, museum-goers have to settle for experiencing The Met—and the rest of NYC's art galleries and museums—virtually.
The same goes for this year's Museum Mile Festival—New York's celebration of the institutions that line Fifth Avenue between 82nd and 110th Streets—which is taking place tomorrow, June 9, from 9am to 9pm. Usually, The Met and other venues throw their doors open to visitors with free admission and special events and programs, but for 2020, the proceedings will take place online as each museum streams pre-recorded programs, virtual exhibition tours, live musical performances, and activities for families across their respective websites and social media platforms.
Eight venues are participating, including The Met: Neue Galerie New York, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, The Jewish Museum, the Museum of the City of New York, El Museo del Barrio and The Africa Center.
What can you expect? Here are a few highlights.
The Met will be offering virtual tours of two of its blockbuster exhibitions, "Sahel: Art and Empires on the Shores of the Sahara" and "Gerhard Richter: Painting After All." There will also be online workshops for kids and teens and streamed dance performances.
The Guggenheim is hosting talks by its curators, plus a self-directed audio/visual experience that will allow visitors to engage with its iconic collection.
Besides a tour of its current exhibition "Madame d'Ora," Neue Galerie New York is presenting a class in making fanciful hats from recycled household items as well as a step-by-step guide to baking the jam-filled Linzer Cookies found on the menu at Neue Galerie's Café Sabarsky.
The Cooper Hewitt, meanwhile, is featuring an online tour of its "Contemporary Muslim Fashions" exhibit, plus a tutorial in how to create patterns with stamps made from potatoes.
There's a lot more, of course, and it's all for free. You can find all the cultural happenings throughout the day by following #VirtualMuseumMile on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
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