Works from Kennedi Carter’s exhibit, Flexing / New Realm, at CAM Raleigh. Left: Shahqeel, medium format film, 2020, image courtesy of the artist. Right: Cassandra, medium format film, 2020, image courtesy of the artist.

Between the summer heat and social distancing, we’re in need of a few indoor activities that can expand our horizons and tap into our creativity. Fortunately, many cultural institutions have stepped in to fill the void of inspiring in-person visits. And while some museums have reopened with careful guidelines in place, they—and their still-closed counterparts—have also created wonderful ways for audiences to experience art at home. Here, we’ve rounded up a few inspiring, enriching, and enlightening virtual exhibits that some of our Scouted museums are offering, as well as art-themed activities and projects that are creative, family-friendly, and just plain fun.

Virtual Exhibitions and Experiences

The museum: CAM Raleigh
Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
Current status: Closed to the public
The exhibition: Kennedi Carter: Flexing/New Realm (March 6, 2020 – January 10, 2021). While CAM Raleigh in Raleigh, North Carolina is currently closed to the public, they are engaging with their audience virtually through virtual artist talks that you can view on Instagram Live, and by posting information and images from many of their current exhibits on their website. One that particularly caught our eye is Kennedi Carter’s Flexing/New Realm, a series of photographs in which Carter, as CAM Raleigh explains, “explores ideas of Blackness related to wealth, power, respect, and belonging. Carter dressed friends and acquaintances in historically-inspired costumes that represent wealth and power. History is referenced, rejected, and reimagined.” The images are beautiful, arresting, and through-provoking.
How to enjoy it at home: Read about the exhibition and see the works here, and view a video documenting a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the exhibition here.

The museum: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
The location:
Bentonville, Arkansas
Current status:
Open to the public, with timed tickets and walk-ups welcome as capacity allows
The exhibition:
State of the Art 2020 (February 22, 2020  – July 27, 2020). While currently open to the public with guidelines in place, the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is also offering dynamic ways to take in their offerings online. One such opportunity is their virtual experience for State of the Art 2020, an exhibition housed in the recently opened space for contemporary visual and performing arts, the Momentary, that features works from a diverse group of 61 artists at different stages of their careers and from across the country grouped into thematic sections including world-building, sense of place, mapping, and temporality. The virtual exploration of exhibition is offered as a guided or self-guided tour, and you can zoom in and out on the artworks, read all accompanying texts, and see the pieces alongside one another. Essentially, it’s as close as you can get to an in-person experience.
How to enjoy it at home:
Read about the exhibition here, and begin your tour here.

The museum: The Barnes Foundation
The location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Current status: Reopening to members on July 23, 2020, and to the public on July 25, 2020
The experience: Beginning in March, the Barnes Foundation started posting short videos on their YouTube channel featuring curators, scholars, and educators discussing some of their favorite works in the collection. Each edition of “Barnes Takeout” runs approximately 10 minutes long, and shows how and where the work is displayed in the gallery before zooming in on the piece in question as the expert gives an informative and in-depth (but digestible!) talk. As of July 19, 2020, 84 videos have been posted.
How to enjoy it at home: You can get your “daily serving of art” here.

At-Home Art-Themed Activities

The museum: Amon Carter Museum of American Art
The location: Fort Worth, Texas
Current status: Open to the public, with guidelines in place
The activity: While closed, the museum launched “Cooped Up With the Carter,” a series of YouTube videos. Each episode focuses on a work in the collection, and a museum staff member or community partner demonstrates how to do a creative activity inspired by the work made from items that most people are likely to have in their house (think: weaving, writing poetry, and taking iPhone photos and using editing tools). Feeling more hungry than crafty? You’re in luck: there’s also a series titled “Cooped Up With the Carter: In the Kitchen,” in which staffers create dishes inspired by works from the collections in their very own homes.
How to enjoy it at home: Find episodes of “Cooped Up With the Carter” here, and episodes of “Cooped Up With the Carter: In the Kitchen” here.

The museum: The Mint Museum
The location: Charlotte, North Carolina
Current status: Closed to the public
The activity: Take your pick! The mint offers multiple ways to “Mint from Home.” Browse their “Create at Home” category for instructions on making a Chihuly-like sculpture, sewing, weaving, taking snapshots, water coloring, making tie-dye hearts, and more. Browse their “Read, Watch, Listen” section to find interesting resources including everything from reading recommendations to lists of artists of influence that you can follow on Instagram to a guided meditation. Want to attend an artist talk or tour a gallery? You can do that virtually via their “Art & Artists” programs.
How to enjoy it at home: Find the Mint’s “Art & Artists” programs here, their “Read, Watch, Listen” content here, and their “Create at Home” activities here.

The museum: Tampa Museum of Art
The location: Tampa, Florida
Current status: Currently open to the public, with guidelines in place.
The activity: The Tampa Museum of Art lets at-home art fans learn about works from their collection and make crafts inspired by the pieces through their nine “Art Spot” projects. The activities are geared toward a variety of ages, and explained via video and detailed handouts with instructions and materials lists. We’re particularly partial to the octopus sculpture inspired by a Greek vessel from the antiquities collection and the photo collages inspired by John Baldessari.
How to enjoy it at home: You can access the videos and downloadable handouts here.