Virtual Museum Mile Festival 2021 set for June 8th



Museum Mile Festival in front of Jewish Museum (from our archives).

Eight New York City museums are coming together, once again, to present the 43rd annual Museum Mile Festival (Virtual/In-Person) on Tuesday, June 8, 2021, from 9 am to 9 pm. The day-long celebration of art and culture will feature live and pre-recorded programs, virtual exhibition tours, live musical performances, and activities for all ages. The content will be streamed across their respective websites and social media platforms, and will include some in-person outdoor programming. Culture enthusiasts from around the world will be able to continue joining New Yorkers for this one-of-a-kind celebration. Audiences can follow the hashtag #MMF2021 on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for cultural happenings throughout the day.

The eight institutions participating in this long-standing collaboration are The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Neue Galerie New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum; The Jewish Museum; Museum of the City of New York; El Museo del Barrio; and The Africa Center. The Museum of the City of New York; El Museo del Barrio, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art are members of the Cultural Institutions Group (CIG), a diverse coalition of 34 nonprofit museums, performing arts centers, historical societies, zoos, and botanical gardens in New York that share a private-public partnership with the City and reside within City-owned property.

“The Museum Mile Festival has attracted joyful crowds of New Yorkers for more than 40 years,” said Cultural Affairs Commissioner Gonzalo Casals. “This year, as our city recovers, Museum Mile will offer opportunities both to engage with live programming, and for people far and wide to participate online. Culture is at the center of New York’s recovery, and we are grateful to the institutions and cultural workers who are committed to bringing us this staple of the city’s cultural scene.”

The Museum Mile Festival, which normally occurs on Fifth Avenue between 82nd Street and 110th Street on the second Tuesday evening in June, was established in 1978 to increase public awareness of its member institutions and promote public support of the arts. The Festival,  hosted virtually this past year due to the pandemic, is presented in this convivial spirit, with the same goal of increasing public awareness of arts and culture, and bringing communities together.
Highlights of Virtual and In-Person Events from Each Museum Include:

The Africa Center
The Africa Center presents “Home Is Where The Music Is,” a special multimedia presentation and discussion celebrating the sounds of Africa and its Diaspora interspersed with photography, art, video, and music featuring broadcaster Georges Collinet and media hub for African music, Jolly Papa. The “Home Is…” series kicked off on World Africa Day on May 25th and will run through Juneteenth, the annual celebration that commemorates the emancipation of enslaved Africans in the United States. The series connects World Africa Day to Juneteenth, two celebrations that are significant to both people of African descent around the world and people of African descent in the United States.

Hear artist Lawrence Weiner talk about his career and the current public art installation ALL THE STARS IN THE SKY HAVE THE SAME FACE on view on the Jewish Museum facade; listen to award-winning actor Rachel Weisz bring Louise Bourgeois’s words to life in an audio guide made in conjunction with the exhibition “Louise Bourgeois, Freud’s Daughter”; hear Edmund de Waal and Adam Gopnik in conversation on the occasion of de Waal’s new book “Letters to Camondo”; watch videos of poet Douglas Ridloff responding to the Jewish Museum collection in ASL; hear from a panel of community activists, cultural theorists, and artists discussing the impact of public artworks and the role of museums in achieving equity; watch virtual performances for families by Aaron Nigel Smith and Joanie Leeds; families can create at-home art activities; and more.

Events include the kick-off of the virtual Studio Series: Quilting program with multidisciplinary artist William Daniels (free with advance registration). Participants will plan, sketch, and develop their own quilting blocks, receiving demonstration and feedback from Daniels himself. Additional pre-recorded programs include a Design at Home video and Learning Lab activity inspired by the colorful pattern designs of Suzie Zuzek, who will be the subject of a forthcoming exhibition, Suzie Zuzek for Lilly Pulitzer: The Prints That Made the Fashion Brand; the Rebellion in Design: Developing a Blueprint for the Future design talk with Virgil Abloh, James Wines and Oana Stănescu, held in conjunction with the exhibition, Willi Smith: Street Couture; and a virtual exhibition tour of Contemporary Muslim Fashions.

El Museum del Barrio

Currently on view through September 26th, ESTAMOS BIEN – LA TRIENAL 20/21 is El Museo’s first national survey of Latinx art, featuring more than 40 artists from across the United States and Puerto Rico, and addressing such pressing issues as identity politics, gentrification and displacement, climate change, as well as the particular effects of the global pandemic, especially as it relates to Latinx populations. As part of La Trienal, the Museum will present recorded interviews with participating artist Candida Alvarez; a virtual tour of the exhibition by the Curators;and an in-person outdoor performance by NYC-based Afro-Caribbean group San Simón at Central Park’s Harlem Meer at 6pm.

Events include Summer Solstice, a live virtual tour exploring works in the Guggenheim collection which feature the sun and light. The live program will include closed captions and images will be verbally described; an audio guide (7 tracks) for Off the Record, an exhibition that brings together the work of contemporary artists from the Guggenheim’s collection who interrogate, revise, or otherwise query dominant narratives and the transmission of culture through official “records”;  “Spotlight” video series featuring Guggenheim Abu Dhabi collection artists; and a pre-recorded conversation with curator Vivien Greene and scholar Maile Arvin as part of the Artwork Anthology series about In the Vanilla Grove, Man and Horse (1891) by Paul Gauguin. In addition, explore the Museum’s series of recent videos and blogs, get to know the collection through a curator’s eyes with the One Artwork, One Question series, and experience Holography: How Artists Sculpt with Light, Space, and Time.

Events include a range of virtual offerings, from online lectures and cooking lessons, to crafting activities and concerts, all available at Neue Galerie New York will reopen on June 10, and visitors are now welcome to register in advance for timed tickets. We look forward to welcoming you back!

Museum of the City of New York

The Museum of the City of New York’s virtual events include encores of the Museum’s live-streamed series, Curators from the Couch, featuring the Museum’s Deputy Director and Chief Curator Sarah Henry and writer, media personality, and window dresser Simon Doonan who discuss the Museum’s famed Stettheimer Dollhouse; conversations with playwright Lynn Nottage and Knicks players Bill Bradley, Willis Reed, Walt Frazier, Earl Monroe, with Harvey Araton-both part of the MCNY Live series; and finally, a workshop for all ages with photographer Janette Beckman who speaks about her creative  process and how to tell stories through the camera as part of the MCNY Kids Create series.

Events include virtual silent exhibition tours of The Temple of Dendur in The Sackler Wing Tour and The Roof Garden Commission: Alex Da Corte, As Long as the Sun Lasts Tour; an artist interview with Carol Bove, discussing The séances aren’t helping, a part of The Facade Commission; as well as #MetKids programming, featuring How Do You Dance in Armor? an interview of performers by kids, and How Did They Get All This Art into the Museum? an interview of Met staff by kids, and more.

* A special thanks to Jasmine Peralta at El Museo del Barrio for this comprehensive information on the 2021 Museum Mile Festival.