Don't Touch The Art, But Definitely Talk To It

We popped over to North Adams to meet up with our pals Noah, Rebecca, and little Mina. They live in Egypt but were visiting family in the States so we planned a quick night halfway between us. I was also super excited to stay at Tourists Welcome and visit Mass MoCA for the first time!

We went to the museum upon arrival and oh my goodness, everyone should go to a contemporary art museum with a toddler. Like with so many activities with kids, experiencing art with one makes you slow down, become more curious, less judgmental, less self-conscious about whether you’re “getting it”…

First thing we saw when we walked in was a video piece featuring a bulldozer. Amina was like, Yes, art is AMAZING.


It also cracked me up when we told Amina we couldn’t touch the art and she tucked her arms up like this for the entire Trenton Doyle Hancock exhibit:


And while I loved the Sol LeWitt show for many reasons entirely unrelated to children, it was pretty damn cute to watch Amina spot her pals Circle, Square, and Triangle from her beloved books about them.

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Back at the hotel we reunited with our real-life pals and hung out in the main lounge with them as it drizzled outside, catching up as our rooms were readied. The space is very trendy, very cute.

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Same with the rooms, though oh my goodness the guy who checked us in accidentally cracked me up so hard—

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He was pointing out that the TV is hidden with a drop cloth sleeve, a design choice I completely understand as my least favorite part about having a TV in the house is how it looks like an ugly black box when it’s turned off. And in describing this he said, “The hotel puts a burlap sac on the TV because they want to keep the room bland.”


Orrr what design snobs might call “minimal”?

I really had to stifle my laughter.

I don’t know, maybe it’s not as funny to you, but people talk to me alllll the time about how our Inn is so “minimal” and how much they love it for that reason and how that’s so chic etc. This moment was just such a great reminder (much like the whole museum with Amina) that one person’s “minimalist design” is another person’s “bland”. That sometimes we all take ourselves waaaay too seriously.

Anyway! It cleared up in the afternoon so we were able to get in some pool time and grounds exploring too and the next morning was beautiful as well.

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It was quick trip, but totally delightful nonetheless.

Hot tip if you head out there yourself: when you buy admission to Mass MoCA you can go the next day too at no additional cost. You better believe we went back in the morning so we could see Amina’s I'm-not-touching-the-art-arms in full effect again:

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We even got the bonus experience of watching her make bird noises at this sculpture in a room full of very serious art appreciators.

Oh the unexpected joys of parenthood.