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Virtual MOCA

Family Guides

MOCA Education makes education more collaborative, inclusive, and learner-centered, and nurtures intellectual growth through transformative experiences with contemporary art. Join our team of MOCA educators as they lead different family friendly activities through interactive workshops, virtual Talking Tours, and classroom curriculum discussions. It is fun for all and particularly helpful for homeschooling!

Download MOCA Family Guides to explore past exhibitions on your own or even better, with a partner! You can print guides or follow along with your own paper to participate.

Richard Tuttle

Richard Tuttle, 44th Wire Piece, 1972, wire, template for pencil line, overall 38 1/8 x 19 1/4 x 9 1/4 in. (119.4 x 55.9 x 28.6 cm); wire approx. 58 in. The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gift of Lannan Foundation.

Richard Tuttle, 44th Wire Piece, 1972, wire, template for pencil line, overall 38 1/8 x 19 1/4 x 9 1/4 in. (119.4 x 55.9 x 28.6 cm); wire approx. 58 in. The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gift of Lannan Foundation.

In this activity, explore an artwork that is part drawing, part sculpture, and part something in between–you may find yourself debating with others about what you think is going on here! Then, make your own version on the wall.

Meg Cranston

Meg Cranston, Magical Death, 2002, papier-mâché, colored tissue, and pastel, 46 1/2 x 22 3/4 x 37 in. (118.11 x 57.79 x 93.98 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Purchase with funds provided by the Curatorial Discretionary Fund.

Meg Cranston, Magical Death, 2002, papier-mâché, colored tissue, and pastel, 46 1/2 x 22 3/4 x 37 in. (118.11 x 57.79 x 93.98 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Purchase with funds provided by the Curatorial Discretionary Fund.

Explore an artwork that the artist described as a sort of piñata of herself. Look carefully and discuss with others. Then, draw what it might look like if you created a piñata version of yourself!

Max Ernst

Max Ernst, Capricorn, 1948-1963, Plaster, 94 x 80 x 51 in. (238.8 x 203.2 x 129.5 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gift of The Capricorn Trust and Mrs. Jimmy Ernst.

Max Ernst, Capricorn, 1948-1963, Plaster, 94 x 80 x 51 in. (238.8 x 203.2 x 129.5 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gift of The Capricorn Trust and Mrs. Jimmy Ernst.

In this activity, check out a large sculpture that is over 6 feet tall and that was imagined by the artist as a kind of protective guardian. Discuss what you think is going on, then plan out your own guardian sculpture for yourself.

Joyce Kozloff

Joyce Kozloff, Negating the Negative (An Answer to Ad Reinhardt’s On Negation), 1976 and On Affirmation, 1976.

Joyce Kozloff, Negating the Negative (An Answer to Ad Reinhardt’s On Negation), 1976 and On Affirmation, 1976.

Meet an artist who uses words to convey her message. Read this artwork and have a discussion with your group about what you all think might be going on. Then, write out what you are for and what you are against, using this artwork as inspiration.

Raymond Saunders

Raymond Saunders, Palette, 1983, oil, enamel, graphite, and oil pastel on canvas, 94 1/2 x 82 1/2 x 1 1/2 in. (240.03 x 209.55 x 3.81 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gift of Joseph R. Austin.

Raymond Saunders, Palette, 1983, oil, enamel, graphite, and oil pastel on canvas, 94 1/2 x 82 1/2 x 1 1/2 in. (240.03 x 209.55 x 3.81 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Gift of Joseph R. Austin.

In this activity, check out an artist who plays with different types of lines, brustrokes, and marks. Look closely, share with others what you see (did they see anything different than you?). Then, experiment by drawing lines and marks that surprise you!

With Pleasure: Pattern and Decoration in American Art 1972–1985 Part II

Miriam Schapiro with Sherry Brody, Dollhouse, 1972, wood, mixed media, 79 3/4 × 82 × 8 1/2 in. (202.57 × 208.28 × 21.59 cm). Smithsonian American Art Museum. Museum purchase through the Gene Davis Memorial Fund.

Miriam Schapiro with Sherry Brody, Dollhouse, 1972, wood, mixed media, 79 3/4 × 82 × 8 1/2 in. (202.57 × 208.28 × 21.59 cm). Smithsonian American Art Museum. Museum purchase through the Gene Davis Memorial Fund.

In this Family Guide, explore two artworks from MOCA’s exhibition With Pleasure: Pattern and Decoration in American Art 1972–1985.

First, explore a dollhouse created by Miriam Schapiro with Sherry Brody. Look closely, and discuss with others what you see. Then, imagine what stories might be unfolding in each of the rooms. 

Next, examine an artwork that exists on the walls like wallpaper. While you can’t walk around this artwork right now, use your imagination: what if you could not only visit it, but throw a party in it? Let your imagination run wild as you plan your dream party inspired by the space!

Open House: Elliot Hundley

Corita Kent, things go better with, 1967, serigraph on paper, Paper: 23 x 35 in. (58.42 x 88.9 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Purchased with funds provided by the Drawings Committee.

Corita Kent, things go better with, 1967, serigraph on paper, Paper: 23 x 35 in. (58.42 x 88.9 cm). The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Purchased with funds provided by the Drawings Committee.

In this Family Guide, explore two artworks from MOCA’s exhibition Open House: Elliott Hundley.

In the first activity, learn about an artist who was interested in using the alphabet to not only write words, but also to create surprising shapes. Follow her lead as you reimagine letters and make them into different designs.

On the next page, check out an artwork that is made up of lots of objects, some you might recognize and some you might be curious about. Then, focus on one particular object and write an imagined history about it!

The Foundation of the Museum: MOCA's Collection

Andrea Zittel, A to Z Breeding Unit: For Averaging Eight Breeds, 1993, steel, wool, glass, and electronics. Gift of Donatella and Jay Chiat.

Andrea Zittel, A to Z Breeding Unit: For Averaging Eight Breeds, 1993, steel, wool, glass, and electronics. Gift of Donatella and Jay Chiat.

In this Family Guide, explore two artworks from MOCA’s exhibition The Foundation of the Museum: MOCA's Collection.

Begin by examining an artwork that, at first glance, looks like just a lightbulb plugged into the wall. But is that it? Look carefully and see what more you can find! Then, draw your own version of what it looks like to have an idea.

Then, check out an artwork that was originally meant as a house for chickens! Discuss this further with others, guided by the questions. Then, decorate your own chicken, perhaps one that might have even lived in this artwork.

Seven Stations: Selections from MOCA’s Collection

Nari Ward, Carpet Angel, 1992, Carpet, plastic bags, plastic bottles, vinyl carpet runner, springs, wood screws, and rope. Gift of Jennifer McSweeney, in memory of Joan “Penny” McCall.

Nari Ward, Carpet Angel, 1992, Carpet, plastic bags, plastic bottles, vinyl carpet runner, springs, wood screws, and rope. Gift of Jennifer McSweeney, in memory of Joan “Penny” McCall.

In this Family Guide, explore two artworks from MOCA’s exhibition Seven Stations: Selections from MOCA’s Collection.

First, examine a sculpture made of different materials, some of which are even hanging from the ceiling of our museum! Then, plan how you could make your own artwork from reused materials, inspired by this one.

Then, check out an artwork made of rows of silver shoes. Discuss with your group what you think might be going on. Then, zoom in on different parts that grab your attention in a sketching activity.



With Pleasure: Pattern and Decoration in American Art 1972–1985 Part I

Al Loving, Untitled, 1975, mixed media on canvas, 66 × 74 in. (167.64 × 187.96 cm). Collection of Beth Rudin DeWoody

Al Loving, Untitled, 1975, mixed media on canvas, 66 × 74 in. (167.64 × 187.96 cm). Collection of Beth Rudin DeWoody

In this Family Guide, explore two artworks from MOCA’s exhibition With Pleasure: Pattern and Decoration in American Art 1972–1985.

First, check out an artwork made of lots of unique pieces of fabric. Follow the activity to think about these materials in different ways.

Then, explore another artwork that was made by sewing different fabric and painted pieces together. Use your creativity to imagine a fabric artwork of your own, perhaps even inspired by your closet or the fabric around you.


Education at MOCA courtesy of Terri and Michael Smooke. Support provided by The Hearst Foundations.