Coming to a Museum Near You: What’s Happening at the High in 2020?

High Museum of Art
Jan 2 · 4 min read

The High Museum of Art is kicking off the next decade with a new year of exciting exhibitions, programs, and classes for all ages. See what 2020 has in store!

By Lindsey Watts, Public Relations Specialist, High Museum of Art

Exhibitions

A large-scale sculpture of a Gold Coast slave fortress.
A large-scale sculpture of a Gold Coast slave fortress.

The High Museum will start the year with Paa Joe: Gates of No Return (February 29 — May 31, 2020), an exhibition of work by celebrated fantasy coffin maker Joseph Tetteh Ashong, also known as Paa Joe. Though this show does not feature actual coffins, the seven large-scale, painted wood architectural sculptures embody vessels of death. They represent Gold Coast fortresses, which served as way stations for millions of Africans sold into slavery and sent to the Americas and the Caribbean between the 16th and 19th centuries. Once they were forced through the “Gates of No Return,” these enslaved people started an irreversible and perilous journey during which many died. In addition to the sculptures, the exhibition features archival documents and recordings that provide context to the artist’s creative process and offer points of entry into the history of these charged historic sites.

A photographer works in an open studio as onlookers shuffle by and observe the artist’s progress.
A photographer works in an open studio as onlookers shuffle by and observe the artist’s progress.

In March, the High welcomes Live Lab: Photography Residency and Exhibition (March 16— April 19, 2020), as the first U.S. venue for the collaboration with international photographic cooperative, Magnum Photos. American photographer Carolyn Drake and South African artists Lindokuhle Sobekwa and Mikhael Subotzky will explore Atlanta and the surrounding areas during a two-week “photographic jam session” to explore themes relevant to the city. The creative process will come to life as the artists’ workspaces are opened for select public viewings. The residency culminates with a pop-up exhibition of the work at the High Museum.

An installation space features walls and floors made of grids filled with scrolls of colorful fabric.
An installation space features walls and floors made of grids filled with scrolls of colorful fabric.

speechless: different by design (April 25 — September 26, 2020) will debut new work by six leading and emerging international designers and design teams — Ini Archibong, Matt Checkowski, Misha Kahn, Steven and William Ladd, Laurie Haycock Makela, and Yuri Suzuki. The designers will create participatory environments that invite museum visitors to interact. The site-specific installations will merge research, aesthetics, and design innovations to explore the vast spectrum of sensory experiences in the museum setting.

Programs

The High’s Teen Team members stand together for a group picture.
The High’s Teen Team members stand together for a group picture.

The High’s Teen Team is gearing up to propel the class of 2020 into the dynamic world of art and museum careers. The new class will get a first-hand feel for exhibition planning, original content creation, and hosting public programs geared specifically toward teens. Throughout the year, the rising high school juniors and seniors will experience an eight-week summer intensive program, take part in youth classes and the High’s popular Second Sunday event, and expand their roles as creative visionaries amongst their peers.

A photo of flowers, greenery, and scissors is next to a European painting of a bouquet of similar flowers.
A photo of flowers, greenery, and scissors is next to a European painting of a bouquet of similar flowers.

Creative Aging and Lifelong Learning continue to be a top priority for the Museum, and its expanded programs for visitors ages 55 and up will offer something new in 2020. New art appreciation courses and art-making workshops will help attendees hone skills including mindfulness and floral arranging. Class participants can enjoy exploring their creativity in a fun, supportive environment.

A young teen holds a notebook and looks up at a highly adorned, colorful textile artwork.
A young teen holds a notebook and looks up at a highly adorned, colorful textile artwork.

The High’s Saturday Studios will offer monthly classes for students grades one through eight to explore their creative practices, experience the High’s galleries in new ways and learn the fundamentals of various art practices. Participants can enjoy a single class, or register for all of them to build upon their skills each month. Which Saturday Studios are right for your kids? Art + Play, designed for first and second graders, combines the fun of play with art-focused games, gallery scavenger hunts, and musical elements. Children in third through fifth grades will enjoy Art as Storytelling to learn how to express themselves through words and images. Each monthly class will present the opportunity to create a graphic novel, practice penmanship, journal, or even illustrate short stories. For young artists in grades six through eight, TEXTile Design opens the world of textile creation and design. Tapestry making, cross stitching, and quilting techniques offer an alternative to digital-focused entertainment while teaching hands-on, usable skills to middle school-aged students.

High Museum of Art

Stories from the High Museum of Art in Atlanta

High Museum of Art

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The High is the Southeast’s leading art museum, bringing creativity to your everyday. Our collections, exhibitions, and programs are always here for you.

High Museum of Art

Stories from the High Museum of Art in Atlanta

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