Artist Activations

Artist Activations invited contemporary artists to draw inspiration for new work from the Met’s historical collection, and collaborate with the public to unpack artist process and art-making throughout time.
Please scroll down for examples.

Universal Design Drawing Table (2016)
Leading up to the opening of the Met Breuer, architect and designer Bika Rebek worked with the Met Education Department to create a universal design drawing table. When completed, the table was 28 feet long, had 3 heights with custom sized movable stools, and an end section with recessed holders for custom engraved drawing tools. The table is designed for all ages and abilities, as well as for sighted and blind participants. It occupied the ground floor of the Breuer building over the inaugural weekend, as the walls around it filled with collaboratively created drawings inspired by the artist Nazirin Mohamedi, who continued to create meticulous drawings during the last decade of her life despite deteriorating motor functions due to a neurological disorder.

Analog/Digital Bodies (2016)
For this event artists Steven Fragale and Deborah Lutz collaborated to explore how the experience of drawing bodies, architecture, and space shifted between analog and virtual/digital drawing tools. Focusing on the same live models posing in the iconic Temple of Dendur, Steven used the VR TiltBrush to create gesture drawings, while Deborah used white paper and charcoal pencils. The artists narrated their process in real time to a group of over 300 participants, each using their own sketchbooks and/or mobile devices to sketch simultaneously.
Images by Filip Wolak.

Finding Derrick 5-9 (2016)
On the anniversary of Sol LeWitt’s birthday, artist Derrick Adams performed a slow meditation for multiple hours in which he “disappeared” into LeWitt’s Wall Drawing #370, installed in a long gallery popular with selfie-takers. The piece was a mediation on artist legacy. In a nod to coloring books and children’s search and find games, the shapes in LeWitt’s piece were printed out and participants were invited to draw Adams using the shifting lines of his outfit juxtaposed against the painting.
Images by Filip Wolak.


Sally Hemings @ the Met (2016)
Sarah “Sally” Hemings was an enslaved woman owned by President Thomas Jefferson. Artist Marisa Williamson, embodying Hemings as a museum educator, took visitors through a tour of the Met’s period rooms.
Images by Filip Wolak.

The Magus Metropolitan Museum of Art (2015)
Irvin Morazan created a site-specific performance from his research into masks and masking practices throughout Mesoamerica and Oceania, collections located in adjacent galleries at the Met. Visitors of all ages were invited to watch the performance and speak with the artist before creating their own masks drawing from multiple overlapping identities.
Images by Filip Wolak.