Workers Leaving the Museum

Video installation, participatory research inquiry into labor at MASS MoCA, broadsheets, skin-on-frame kayak constructed with museum workers. (2011)

Workers Leaving the Museum (2011) is an installation (video, sculpture) drawing on a year-long investigation into artistic labor at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) in North Adams, MA.

Inspired by the Lumières Brothers’ 1895 film, Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory in Lyon, in which the filmmakers turned their cameras on their own workers as they leave the worksite.  In the process, the worker is effectively recast as the first film actor in their moment between work and leisure time.  Workers Leaving the Museum, turns the regard of the cultural institution back upon itself, and to follow museum workers beyond their work on the “production lines” of the cultural factory, to register their comportment as they are leaving the museum, and to inquire about their role in the creation of culture.

The project was presented this Summer at MASS MoCA as one of three pieces commissioned by James Voorhies of Bureau for Open Culture for the exhibition “I am Searching for Field Character.

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Exhibition Timeline

Bureau for Open Culture at MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA. (2011)

Hunter College Black Box, IMA MFA Thesis Show, New York. (2011)