On Friday and Saturday June 15-16, families engaged with two full days of art, music, storytelling, and dancing in this year’s Family Art Festival, celebrating the Beauty and Belief: Crossing Bridges with the Arts of Islamic Culture exhibition.
This exhibition explores the culture of Islam through its visual language, showcasing over 250 objects from the 7th century to the present. The Family Art Festival continued this aim, allowing families to engage with other aspects of Islamic culture.
Sounds of Middle Eastern instruments filled the museum while children drummed and danced along with the visiting musicians. Meanwhile, other parents and children created Islamic Art “Tiles” and postcards, talked with local Muslims about Islamic culture, and enjoyed Middle Eastern stories performed by professional storytellers. Children even had the opportunity to request intricate henna designs on their hands and arms.
Krisanne Hastings, Museum Educator for School and Family Programs, said, “I was happy to see families engaged in all aspects of the festival, including the dancing, music, art making, and the storytelling.”
Participants of all ages voiced their enjoyment.
“This is great,” said Sean. “It is very interactive for the kids so the parents and kids can have a fun time.”
Another parent, Chris, was excited to have found out about the event.
“I am so glad I did,” she said. “I like it here, and I didn’t know they did it every year. . . . We are interested in things that are active, and I was excited for my 3½-year-old because she can have things to see and do.”
Her daughter Emily, when asked about her favorite part, said, “I like to see the patterns, and I like the coloring.”
Chris explained, “We have been learning about patterns in math and, wow, patterns are everywhere.”
Over two thousand people attended the event over its two-day run.