A Valentine’s Museum Love Letter Week: Mass MoCA, North Adams, Massachusetts

Patrick Garry, February 15, 2024

Dear Mass MoCA,

I love you. From my first visit, the work of the many artists you house captured my heart. Your impeccable selection and displays of works of amazing contemporary arts leave me in awe every time I visit.

Whether it be the bands playing folk museum in the summer and fall or events hosted each season to engage with the community, I always feel welcome by your engagement efforts. Your range of artists challenges my intellect in ways your peers do not. However, your selection of art is the constant reason for my enthusiasm. The often rotating installations and the artists you introduced me to factions of contemporary art I would never have been made aware of. It has also introduced me to many of my favorite contemporary artists, including Jenny Holzer and James Turrell. Through these different artists and topics, I have learned more about the human experience than I have at any other institution.

Installation at Mass MoCA. Photo: Patrick Garry.

I am constantly immersed by your interactive installations, which allow me to experience the world of art in new ways at every visit—exposing me to works that ask one to walk into the unknown. Whether that be a literal pitch-black room full of sounds where one cannot see a thing or an exhibit that explores the world through the eyes of someone deaf, the institution provides art that shows a new perspective on the human experience. As an institution, Mass MoCA has also shown me that art can be more than just a reflection of society hung on a wall; it can be an experience happening in real-time, meant to be shared with the person next to you. To be shared with humanity as a tool of connection.

Installation at Mass MoCA. Photo: Patrick Garry.

For this reason, you are the perfect place to go with the ones I love. I have taken many of my best friends and family there for birthdays or even on school breaks; I would rally a group to go experience the art together. The outreach made by your museum educators and instructors has exposed me and my loved ones to a further understanding of the art on view when we visit. The institution is a cornerstone of the North Adams community.

Mass MoCA, you have constantly inspired me with art from across the art world. And for that, I cannot thank you enough.

Love, Patrick Garry