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The University of Massachusetts Amherst
Past Events
September 29, 2022, 4:30 PM EDT

Opening Reception for 60 Years of Collecting exhibition

4:30–7:30 p.m. / UMCA

September 30, 2022, 9:30 AM EDT

"The Future of Collecting" Symposium

9:30 a.m.—3:00 p.m. / Full details at:

October 8, 2022, 1:00 PM EDT

Conversations & Reflections: Politics, Community, and Empathy

a young person with long hair blowing in the wind and wearing glasses and smiling

with Danielle Efrat

60 Years of Collecting is the UMCA’s celebration of our permanent collection, highlighting the museum’s commitment to contemporary art as a catalyst for conversation around urgent issues of our time, building community, and creating empathy. Art making is a form of thinking accessed through empathy, with contemporary art as no exception. Is all art political? Emotional? Together, we’re going to explore three works and use them as catalysts for these kinds of conversations about politics, community, and empathy.

Danielle Efrat is a senior Art History major, with minors in Art and Education, and this is her first semester as a Student Educator at the UMCA. Efrat is particularly interested in the intersection of public education and art history, and most importantly, engaging in conversations about art and making personal connections regardless of knowledge level or background.

October 14, 2022, 12:00 PM EDT

Autumn Fine Arts Center Arts Walk and Dance Party


October 15, 2022, 1:00 PM EDT

a young person with long blonde hair and glasses smiling with a mountain in the background.

with Maggie Carroll

These pieces all play with the role of children in a world that is unknowing, large, and complicated. Looking through the eyes of adolescence could provide a view of life that a lot of us have not considered in a while, while also opening topics of discussion regarding gender, race, and the climate of the world in a different way. These images display the role of community, or lack thereof. These pieces are so unique because they capture the most formative stages of one's life in a context and time of immense history. The adolescent years are a time of identity, personal development, belonging, and even awkwardness; these images not only capture that feeling but invoke conversations and reflection among the viewers. When looking at these images think about how over time how adolescence has changed, but how it has also stayed the same.

Maggie Carroll is a senior at UMass studying Art History. She is 21 years old and has always been interested in the way history is captured in various mediums of art and expression. She loves historical research and being a part of the many ways the public interacts with art!

October 22, 2022, 1:00 PM EDT

Ancient Myth in Contemporary Art: How the Classics still Inspire

a young person with glasses and a baseball cap

with Hayley Logan

Ancient Myth in Contemporary Art explores how the beauty and theology of the past is preserved and revitalized in contemporary art pieces. Exploring the histories and begging the question: "How have Ancient myths survived for so long?"

Hayley Logan is a senior History major with Education and Classical Culture minors. She loves museums and hopes to work as an archivist for The Walt Disney Company one day. Over the summer she studied History and Art History at Oxford University, exploring the rich galleries England has to offer.

October 29, 2022, 1:00 PM EDT

Unconventional Femininity: Three Female Printmakers and Their Works

a young person in a flowered hat smiling broadly

with Jane Curran
While there are many unconventional prints on display in 60 Years of Collecting these four (two of the pieces are by the same artist) works were selected because of the way they engage with the flexible nature of prints. Their textile-like nature and pliability can be seen as manifestations of what it means to be a woman in our society, the strength that must be used and stress that must be endured. How does the materiality affect the interpretation, the size of the work, and the artists’ history? This tour aims to discuss these themes in addition to spotlighting women artists.

Jane Curran is a junior Art History major with a Japanese minor and a passion for museum education. She is the president of the UMass Art History Society. Her summers are spent in the Worcester Art Museum Education department helping with the youth classes. Jane brings excitement into all of the work she does for the museum. She loves abstract and sculptural arts and tends to focus on them for her research in her classes. She hopes to one day be a museum curator or gallerist.

November 5, 2022, 1:00 PM EDT

Nature’s Dual Embrace: The Isolating and Comforting Effects of Nature in Art

a young blonde woman in front of greenery

with Meredith Boyle
Nature's Dual Embrace examines the various and conflicting impacts that nature can have on the human experience and our emotions. Looking at how the specific artists featured in the tour have manipulated nature for their own artistic production, we will explore concepts such as the objective and subjective within art, photography, and nature. The tour will also delve into our own perceptions of art and nature and how they can change when we're introduced to new information or context. Art and nature are universal experiences for everyone, but this tour reveals how diverse our notions, reactions, and interpretations of to these things can be.
Meredith Boyle is a senior at UMass Amherst studying Political Science and Art History, with a minor in History. Combining two majors, Boyle is incredibly interested in examining the politics of museums and the role that power plays in the art world. her personal and academic research explores fashion and how it functions within art and politics. Additionally, Boyle is specifically fascinated with how museums and art education can be made more accessible and exciting to everybody, which she hopes to bring to my time at the UMCA!

November 9, 2022, 12:00 PM EST

“Artists on Artists”: Mary Ijichi and Olivia Bernard


November 12, 2022, 1:00 PM EST

Self Portraits as a Means of Reflection and Connection

 headshot of a woman with long brown hair and hoop earrings smiling

with Emma Hoffman
Self-portraits have existed throughout art history, from the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans to Jan Van Eyck and Jean Fouquet Renaissance paintings, to more recent work by artists such as Vincent Van Gogh and Andy Warhol. Humans are always looking for ways to express their personal identities and art is an enduring way of doing this. Self Portraits as a Means of Reflection and Connection will examine works in which the artist has chosen to include a depiction of themselves and will explore why self-portraits are such an enduring and effective type of artwork.
Emma Hoffman is a sophomore studying political science and art history. Hoffman grew up surrounded by the arts, and has always been fascinated by the role art plays in creating political change. She is passionate about creating greater access to the arts and using them as a tool of social justice. Outside of the museum, Hoffman is involved in the International Relations Club and HFA Student Leadership Board at UMass, and enjoys swimming, reading, and listening to music.

November 16, 2022, 12:00 PM EST

Vote for Art—“Collecting 101”

TBD / Bromery Center for the Arts

November 19, 2022, 1:00 PM EST

Capturing Chaos and Acknowledging Anxiety: Social, Political, and Personal

a young man with dimples and a big smile next to a tree

with Andersson Perry
Anxiety is something that we as human beings all experience every single day; it can manifest itself on many levels from a sudden quiver in the gut to a full-on panic attack. Anything and everything can trigger anxiety; it is an individualized curse.

Can the visual arts help us accept this part of life by acknowledging its existence?
How can depictions of anxiety and chaos bring humanity closer together?

Join Student Museum Educator, Andersson Perry, on a tour of 3 works that, to him, incite some level of anxiety for viewers. Explore how works by Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, and Stephen Petegorsky, each vastly different from one another, teach us about anxiety on a social level, a political level, and a personal level.  We will attempt to find meaning by discussing our own emotional responses to the works, historicizing the works, and considering the identity of the artist. This tour is meant to be broad, open-ended, and offer audience members the chance to offer their ideas, insights, feelings, and observations.
Andersson Perry is a senior History and Art History double major with a minor in French. He became involved in the UMCA through their Collecting 101 course which allowed him to take part in the presentation and subsequent purchase of Alison’s Saar’s lithograph, Equinox, now in the UMCA’s permanent collection. His art historical interests are broad, ranging from Persian manuscripts to Venetian painting in the 18th century. The UMCA has inspired his newfound interest in Modern and Contemporary Art—something he never imagined appreciating. When not at UMass, he resides in the Berkshires.

December 3, 2022, 1:00 PM EST


a person with a toothy grin in front of wood panels

with Ari Whittum
In my tour I will look at three works of art in the UMCA's 60 Years of Collecting exhibition. Each artwork comes from a different section of the exhibition, but they share a key visual element: a grid, or multiple grids. This tour invites visitors to move around the exhibition, see how diverse the collection is, and gain a wider sense of what the museum is about. The theme of my tour is purely based on visual commonalities and allows the viewer to make connections and observations about the art without needing any prior knowledge. One of the main goals I had in mind while putting together my tour was accessibility. Those on the tour should be able to come to museum, have a good experience, learn a lot, and be able to do so in a relaxed and welcoming environment.
Ari Whittum is a Sophomore Art History student. He loves and is fascinated by museums as communal learning spaces and looks forward to continuing to work with the UMCA.