Thursday nights at the Walker are more blind date than play date, but we took Baby J and O to see the Brave New Worlds exhibition last Thursday and had a nice time. I previewed the show before we took the kids, and was happy to find more than a few things a five-year-old could appreciate.
If you’re thinking of visiting Brave New Worlds with kids, here are a few things my kids liked. Maybe yours will like them, too.
The curious origami figures, puffs of fog, and blinking lights in one section of Haegue Yang’s Blind Room reminded O of an airport. The materials were (relatively) common – mini blinds, clumps of mini lights – but from kid’s-eye-view, it must have looked magical.
We spent a long time in Artur Zmijewski’s installation of three videos that document the daily grind of three women workers in Poland. Regular life in a house and at a job– with similarities to and differences from O’s regular life in our American house.
We were all spell-bound by Runa Islam’s Time Lines which combines shots of real tourist attractions with footage of models of the rides. O got a little impatient with the long shots of the cables moving against the blue of the sky – but stuck with it. The suspense – Where’s the car going? Where’s the tower? What are those people waiting for? – kept him watching.
The big messages of the show – what it means for artists to be politically responsible, how artists address the complexities of our “ brave new worlds”– mostly escaped our little group. But I like that O got a bit of perspective on how people live and work in other parts of the world. And I liked that it didn’t take a cartoon character, frenetic action, or wacky dialogue (all staples of children’s media) to get him interested.