Tags for: February Exhibitions and Event Listings for the Cleveland Museum of Art
  • Press Release

February Exhibitions and Event Listings for the Cleveland Museum of Art

Black History Month Programming

The Cleveland Museum of Art is proud to present a series of programs, exhibitions, and performing arts events to honor the contributions of Black artists. The museum is also pleased to showcase the work of Black artists in a variety of genres and mediums, including recent acquisitions of works by Amy Sherald, Emma Amos, and Yinka Shonibare CBE RA. Museum tours celebrating these artists are available. We invite you to join us for memorable experiences all month long.


New Narratives: Contemporary Works on Paper

Through Sunday, April 14, 2024

James and Hanna Bartlett Prints and Drawings Gallery | Gallery 101


New Narratives: Contemporary Works on Paper explores the myriad ways in which contemporary artists use storytelling to engage the imagination, scrutinize the past, and envision the future. Consisting entirely of prints and drawings, the exhibition features many recent acquisitions to the CMA’s collection. Pervading the works on view is an interest in narrative, whether fiction or nonfiction, personal, cultural, or mythic. Artists in the exhibition utilize history, people, or events, biographies of known or often unknown people, and various media juxtapositions to layer the past and the present day.

The two galleries that make up the exhibition are anchored by large-scale, multipart works. Jacob Lawrence’s The Life of Toussaint L’Ouverture (1986), a series of 15 screenprints, recounts aspects of the Haitian revolution (1791–1804), the successful insurrection by enslaved and free people of color against French colonial rule. Lawrence’s expressive style and tightly composed scenes narrate the revolution through the biography of one of its leaders, General Toussaint L’Ouverture (1743–1803). Also featured is Kara Walker’s The Means to an End: A Shadow Drama in Five Acts (1995). This monumental five-part etching employs the style of historical silhouettes popular in the antebellum South to suggest a provocative narrative about race, gender, and power. Also featured are new drawings by Kerry James Marshall and Shahzia Sikander and prints by Camille Billops, Enrique Chagoya, David Wojnarowicz, Michael Menchaca, Renee Stout, and others. 

The Cleveland Museum of Art is funded in part by residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.

This exhibition was supported in part by the Ohio Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Ohio and the National Endowment for the Arts.


Black History Month Tours

Saturdays, February 3, 10, 17, 24, 2024, 2:30–3:30 p.m.

Ames Family Atrium

FREE; ticket required

Celebrate Black History Month with tours highlighting Black artists in the museum’s collection.


Art Up Close: Black Artists

Wednesday, February 7, 2024; Thursday, February 22, 2024; and Tuesday, February 27, 2024, 11:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.

Ames Family Atrium


Celebrate Black History Month by exploring artworks on paper by African American artists. Educators and docents answer your questions and share information. 


Chamber Music in the Galleries: Linking Legacies

Wednesday, February 7, 2024, 6:00–7:00 p.m.

Toby’s Gallery for Contemporary Art | 229A Contemporary 

FREE; no ticket required

We are thrilled to continue our popular Chamber Music in the Galleries concert series featuring young artists and faculty from Case Western Reserve University’s historical performance program, the Cleveland Institute of Music, and the Music Settlement. The repertoire performed at each concert is inspired by the art on view in the gallery in which the performance occurs.

This evening’s Black History Month program features Linking Legacies, an ensemble comprising multiple generations of African American classical artists that honors classical works by African American composers with deep ties to Northeast Ohio. The group is performing in front of Amy Sherald’s He was meant for all things to meet.

The Chamber Music in the Galleries series occurs on the first Wednesday of the month, December through May with the exception of January.


Christopher Jenkins—viola
John McLaughlin Williams—violin 
Khari Joyner—cello
Cornelius Johnson—tenor

This concert is made possible by support from the William O. and Gertrude Lewis Frohring Foundation.


An Evening of Genius Music Composition and Instrumental Virtuosity with Jon Batiste

Sunday, February 25, 2024, 7:00–8:30 p.m.

Gartner Auditorium

Sold out

Jon Batiste performs in an intimate setting at the Cleveland Museum of Art. This concert will be recorded live and the museum welcomes you to be a part of music history in the making.

One of today’s most prolific and accomplished musicians, Batiste has won multiple Grammy awards and an Oscar, and is nominated this year for another Oscar for Best Original Song (with Dan Wilson). Born and raised in New Orleans, Batiste studied and received both a BA and an MFA at the world-renowned Juilliard School in New York City. From 2015 until 2022, Batiste served as the bandleader and musical director of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert on CBS. In 2018, he received a Grammy nomination for Best American Roots, and in 2020, he received two Grammy nods for the albums Chronology of a Dream: Live at the Village Vanguard and Meditations (with Cory Wong).

Batiste composed and performed music for the Disney/Pixar film Soul, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Original Score alongside fellow composers Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. He is the second Black composer in history, after legendary jazz musician Herbie Hancock, to win an Academy Award for composition. Soul also earned Batiste a Golden Globe, a BAFTA, an NAACP Image Award, and a Critic’s Choice Award.

Batiste’s album We Are was released in March 2021 to overwhelming critical acclaim. Subsequently, he was nominated for 11 Grammys across seven different categories, a first in Grammy history. He went on to win five of those Grammys, including Album of the Year.

Batiste’s latest studio album, World Music Radio—featuring collaborators including Jon Bellion, Lana Del Rey, and Lil Wayne—draws inspiration from his mission to create community with the power of music. The album received widespread critical acclaim for its universal message and genre-defying sound, hailed by NPR as “a sprawling exploration of what global music can sound like,” and by the Associated Press as “a mesmerizing way to dial into Batiste’s eclectic and wide musicality.”

Along with his longtime partner, Emmy award–winning journalist and New York Times bestselling author Suleika Jaouad, Batiste is the subject of the upcoming documentary portrait American Symphony, which premiered at the 2023 Telluride Film Festival. The documentary follows the two artists through one of the most intense years of their lives: Batiste is amid the creation of a symphonic masterwork that will be performed at Carnegie Hall and is nominated for an unprecedented 11 Grammys the same week Jaouad discovers the leukemia she battled a decade earlier has returned.



MIX: Dreamhouse

Friday, February 2, 2024, 6:00–10:00 p.m.

Ticket required

Come on, Barbie, let’s go party! Join us for an evening inspired by the famed fashion doll. Pink will look so good on you at this dance party featuring two sets of nostalgic favorites spun by Grog Shop personality and WRUW 91.1 DJ Guilty Pleasures (Rachel Hunt). Wave & Rowanne also performs a set of their melodic and infectious electronic dance music symbolizing unity in diversity, a combination of Wave’s jazz improvisation background and Rowanne’s Middle Eastern roots. Be sure to take a photo in our life-size Barbie doll box. Food and drink items, including pink baked goods, cocktails, beer, and wine, are available to purchase from Bon Appétit. 

We can’t wait to see you at this Friday-night extravaganza. 

The entertainment schedule for the evening is as follows:

6:00 p.m.: Guilty Pleasures

7:15 p.m.: Wave & Rowanne

8:30 p.m.: Guilty Pleasures

MIX is a 21+ event.


No Exit: Year of Surreality

Friday, February 9, 2024, 7:30–9:00 p.m.

Gartner Auditorium

FREE; ticket required

The Cleveland Museum of Art presents a concert focusing on Surrealism featuring the group No Exit New Music Ensemble. 

Since No Exit’s inception, the idea behind the group has been to serve as an outlet for the commission and performance of contemporary avant-garde concert music. Now in its 15th season and with well over 300 commissions to date, the ensemble strives to create exciting, meaningful, and thought-provoking 
programs—always with the philosophy of bringing the concert hall to the community and presenting programs in a manner that allows audiences to connect with the experience. 

As part of No Exit’s season-long multifaceted exploration and celebration of Surrealism, the group is making its CMA debut with a captivating and utterly entertaining deep dive into the realm of dreams, the irrational, the unconscious, and the inexplicable. This genre-defying multidisciplinary program includes music, film, and more. 

More information about No Exit can be found on the ensemble’s website


Introduction (video) by Timothy Beyer

Dadaist Anthem (video) by Tristan Tzara

La Nourrice Américaine (fast) by Francis Picabia, piano

Caramel Mou by Darius Milhaud, piano

Adieu, New York! by Georges Auric, piano

La Nourrice Américaine (slow) by Francis Picabia, piano

Drie Composities Voor Klavier by E.L.T. Mesens, piano

Backwards Addict by James Praznik, ensemble

Dinactic Perplaxity Ritual by Timothy Beyer, ensemble


The Birdhouse (video) by Timothy Beyer

Breathing Room (video) by Luke Haaksma, ensemble

In Fourteen Steps (video) by James Praznik, ensemble

Cara Tweed—violin

James Rhodes—viola

Nicholas Diodore—cello

Gunnar Owen Hirthe—clarinet

Sean Gabriel—flute

James Praznik—piano and associate director

Rob Kovacs—piano

Shuai Wang—piano

Luke Rinderknecht—percussion

Edwin Wade—art director

Timothy Beyer—director 


CIM New Music Ensemble

Sunday, February 11, 2024, 2:00–3:30 p.m.

Gartner Auditorium

FREE; ticket required

The Cleveland Museum of Art presents the CIM New Music Ensemble under the direction of Dr. Keith Fitch. The group is performing music by Frank Wiley, Luciano Berio, Shulamit Ran, and guest composer Carlos Sanchez-Gutierrez.

Devoted to the music of our time, as well as classics of the 20th century, the CIM New Music Ensemble has hosted many of today’s leading composers, including Claude Baker, Marcos Balter, Chen Yi, Donald Crockett, Sebastian Currier, James Mobberly, David Rakowski, Steven Stucky, Jerod Impichchaachaaha’ Tate, Augusta Read Thomas, and Joan Tower.

Members of the group have gone on to found new music ensembles and series, including Classical Revolution Cleveland, FiveOne Experimental Orchestra, and Ars Futura. Alumni of the ensemble include Jinjoo Cho, the 2014 Gold Medal Laureate of the International Violin Competition of Indianapolis.



Wednesday, February 14, 2024, 7:30–9:00 p.m.

Gartner Auditorium

Ticket required

In anticipation of the openings of two Korean exhibitions, Into the Seven Jeweled Mountain and Korean Couture: Generations of Revolution, the CMA is proud to present the Cleveland debut performance of CelloGayageum.

CelloGayageum is an exceptional intercultural musical duo composed of cellist Sol Daniel Kim and gayageum player Dayoung Yoon. Drawing inspiration from the Pavilion of Unity in Berlin, a city with a tragic history of war, division, and reunification, they have seamlessly blended the musical cultures and instruments of the cello and gayageum to create a harmonious symbiosis in both sound and style.

Formed in 2016, CelloGayageum has received worldwide recognition and accolades. The duo was honored with the prestigious Soorim Culture Prize, and the group’s debut album, South Wave, North Wind, was produced with the help of a grant from the Seoul Foundation for Arts and Culture. Moreover, CelloGayageum was named “Artist of the Year” by the Jeongdong Theater in Seoul, solidifying the duo’s place as one of today’s most exciting and innovative musical acts.

CelloGayageum’s passion for traditional South Korean music is evident in the group’s performances, which have captured the hearts of audiences around the world. CelloGayageum has appeared on several popular Korean prime-time TV networks, including KBS, JTBC, and MBN, and has toured extensively throughout Asia, Europe, and beyond.

CelloGayageum is not just a musical duo but a phenomenon. The group’s unique fusion of instruments and musical styles creates a sound that is both timeless and contemporary. By showcasing the beauty and richness of South Korean music to audiences around the world, CelloGayageum is redefining what it means to be a global musical act.

Preceding tonight’s performance, Sol Daniel Kim and Dayoung Yoon are partaking in a community dialogue at 6:00 p.m. moderated by Dr. Sooa McCormick, Korea Foundation Curator of Korean Art at the CMA, to highlight the influences of traditional Korean music on the duo’s contemporary compositions.

$33–$45, CMA members $30–$40


Final Days

Raja Deen Dayal: The King of Indian Photographers

Through Sunday, February 4, 2024

Mark Schwartz and Bettina Katz Photography Gallery | Gallery 230


In 2016, the museum acquired 37 photographs made by Raja Deen Dayal (1844–1905), hailed as the first great Indian photographer. This exhibition marks the Cleveland debut of these rare images, all of which come from a single album and were shot in 1886 and 1887, an important juncture in the artist’s life. On display alongside Dayal’s photographs are historical Indian paintings, textiles, clothing, and jewelry from the museum’s collection. These objects provide viewers with insight into the cultural context and help translate the objects in the photographs from monochrome into color.

Dayal was a surveyor working for the British government when he took up photography as a hobby in 1874. In 1885, he attempted to make it his career, and by 1887, he had cemented his stature as one of the country’s top photographers, British or Indian. This rare early album pictures both the maharajas of princely India and the British colonial elite. Dayal produced formal portraits but also more personal views of the Indian nobility. In a moving portrait of a ten-year-old maharaja, Dayal reveals the boy beneath the crown. Weighed down by necklaces and jewels, he occupies a chair that is too tall for him; his stockinged feet curl under so they touch the ground. 

Dayal’s talent also won him access to the highest levels of British society. He photographed government meetings and leisurely afternoons of badminton and picnics, costume parties, and even a private moment of communion between an Englishman and his bulldog. Dayal portrayed how the British brought England with them to India and, in some images, the Indian servants who supported that lifestyle. The photographer cultivated his relationship with the military by documenting troop maneuvers, several views of which are included.

Visually striking, seductively charming, and highly informative, these photographs and objects offer new insights into the early career of India’s most important 19th-century photographer and into British and Indian life at the height of the colonial “Raj.”

Raja Deen Dayal: The King of Indian Photographers is made possible with support from Raj and Karen Aggarwal and Anne T. and Donald F. Palmer. 


Final Weeks

Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 in C Minor (Resurrection): Autograph Manuscript on Loan from the Cleveland Orchestra

Through Sunday, February 11, 2024

Monte and Usha Ahuja Founders Rotunda | Gallery 200


In 2020, the Cleveland Orchestra received an extraordinary, unique gift: the full, handwritten score of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 from the orchestra’s International Trustee Dr. Herbert G. Kloiber. One of the leading composers of late Romantic symphonic music, Gustav Mahler (1860–1911) was born in Bohemia (modern Czech Republic) and active in Germany and Austria. His monumental Second Symphony is considered the grandest of all symphonies from the 1800s. Requiring more than 100 instrumentalists, two soloists, and a full chorus, and at nearly 80 minutes, it surpassed its choral predecessors by Ludwig van Beethoven, Hector Berlioz, and Franz Liszt in range and conception.

Mahler wrote the dramatic score between 1888 and 1894 in his characteristically bold musical script, mainly in intense black ink, with some parts in brown or violet. It is a working manuscript with inserted leaves, corrections, deletions, and revisions. Additions to the orchestration are written in blue crayon in the first three movements, and in violet ink in the final movement. The complete manuscript is 232 pages, comprising 24- and 28-stave (musical staff) papers in unbound bifolios. This is the composer’s only handwritten manuscript of the complete symphony and includes the work’s finale, its crowning glory.

The Cleveland Orchestra acknowledges Dr. Herbert G. Kloiber with deep gratitude for his generous gift of the autograph manuscript of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 2. The Cleveland Orchestra thanks the Cleveland Museum of Art for its partnership in the manuscript’s care and temporary display.


Material and Immaterial in Korean Modern and Contemporary Art

Through Sunday, February 25, 2024

Korea Foundation Gallery | Gallery 236


This thematic display explores how artists have manipulated materials and techniques as affective modes of communication to voice their thoughts, beliefs, and emotions. Lee Bul, a leading contemporary artist, is known for exploring issues of gender, oppression, and inequity. In her recent work Perdu CX (2021), Lee challenges the binary categories of organic and artificial and free-style drawing and crafted texture through her manipulation of lacquer and synthetic acrylic. Yun Hyong Keun’s Umber-Black (1975), one of the museum’s most recent acquisitions, on the other hand, illuminates how materials and processes echo the energy and psychology underneath: here, suppressed anger and frustration about South Korea’s postwar dictatorship in the 1970s and 1980s. Finally, Lee Ufan, known for his minimalist sculptures and paintings, poetically explores the interrelationships among materiality, abstract concepts, and processes in Dialogue (2016).


New This Month

Barbara Bosworth: Sun Light Moon Shadow

Sunday, February 25, through Sunday, June 30, 2024

Mark Schwartz and Bettina Katz Photography Galleries | Gallery 230 

When photographer Barbara Bosworth was a child growing up in Novelty, Ohio, she would go on nighttime walks with her father, and they would gaze up at the sky. This practice, which became a lifelong passion, inspired the photographs in this exhibition. Timed to coincide with the total solar eclipse visible in Cleveland on April 8, it explores Bosworth’s photographs of light—from eclipses, sunrises, and sunsets to the luminescent glow of fireflies and a flashlight. 

Light is essential to both photography and astronomy. British scientist and astronomer Sir John Herschel coined the term photography in 1839 by combining Greek words that mean “drawing with light.” The camera and telescope, which Bosworth has used together in some of the photographs on view, each collect light. Her pictures of stars are the result of the impact on film of light that has traveled millions of years to get there.

Nine monumental color images of the sky and heavenly bodies are joined by six intimately scaled black-and-white scenes of life and light on the earth. Seen together, they suggest how we endow astronomical phenomena with personal meaning. Bosworth’s art elucidates bonds between humans and the natural world that often go unnoticed.

The Cleveland Museum of Art is funded in part by residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.

This exhibition was supported in part by the Ohio Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Ohio and the National Endowment for the Arts.


From Dreaming to Hiking: Korean Landscape Paintings

Thursday, February 29, through Sunday, September 29, 2024

Korea Foundation Gallery | Gallery 236 

Whether depicting imaginary, idealized terrain or actual geographic and historical sites, Korean landscape paintings are celebrated for their dynamic artistic vocabulary. Natural locations known for awe-inspiring topographic features became the most beloved subjects, but artists also created fictional landscapes that serve as an inspiration to attain a way of life in perfect harmony with nature, as seen in Winter Landscape and Mountain Market, Clear with Rising Mist from the CMA’s collection.  

Coupled with the digital immersive exhibition Into the Seven Jeweled Mountain in the Arlene M. and Arthur S. Holden Textile Gallery (gallery 234), From Dreaming to Hiking explores this Korean landscape painting tradition wherein nature becomes an important dimension of human experience. 


On-Site Activities

Fun with Form: My Very First Art Class

Fridays, February 2, 9, 16, 23, 2024, 10:00–11:00 a.m.

Classrooms B and C

Ticket required

Young children and their favorite grown-up are introduced to art, the museum, and verbal and visual literacy in this playful program. Each class features exploration in the classroom, a gallery visit, and art making. Wear your paint clothes! New topics each class.

Age group: Two to four years old, accompanied by a parent or guardian

Fees and registration cost per session (four Fridays per session) for adult/child pair $100, CMA members $85


Art and Conversation Tours

Tuesdays, February 6, 13, 20, 27, 2024, 10:15–10:45 a.m.

Ames Family Atrium

FREE; ticket required

Join us for a 30-minute close-looking session, from 10:15 to 10:45 a.m. on Tuesdays. This program offers a focused look at just a couple of artworks, versus the traditional 60-minute public tours of the museum’s collection.



Haiti Fights Back: Revolutions and Visual Commemoration

Tuesday, February 6, 2024, 12:00–12:30 p.m.

Gartner Auditorium

FREE; ticket required

Speaker: Yveline Alexis, Associate Professor of Africana Studies and Comparative American Studies at Oberlin College

Come to the CMA for a quick bite of art history. Every first Tuesday of each month, join curators, conservators, scholars, and other museum staff for 30-minute talks on objects currently on display in the museum galleries.

Join Dr. Yveline Alexis as she discusses the struggle for freedom and emancipation in the Americas. She references Jacob Lawrence’s artistic rendering of the famous revolutionaries Toussaint L’Ouverture and Jean-Jacques Dessalines, who overthrew slavery. Alexis focuses on how the Haitian Revolution (1791–1804) became lodged in the imagination, rhetoric, and action of Black freedom fighters in the United States, Cuba, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico.
This program is made possible with support from Gail C. and Elliot L. Schlang.

All education programs at the Cleveland Museum of Art are underwritten by the CMA Fund for Education. Major annual support is provided by Brenda and Marshall Brown, Mr. and Mrs. Walter E. Fortney, Eva and Rudolf Linnebach, and the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation. Generous annual support is provided by an anonymous supporter, the M. E. and F. J. Callahan Foundation, Char and Chuck Fowler, the Giant Eagle Foundation, the Lloyd D. Hunter Memorial Fund, Marta Jack and the late Donald M. Jack Jr., Bill and Joyce Litzler, the Logsdon Family Fund for Education, William J. and Katherine T. O’Neill, Mandi Rickelman, Betty T. and David M. Schneider, the Sally and Larry Sears Fund for Education Endowment, Roy Smith, Paula and Eugene Stevens, the Trilling Family Foundation, and the Womens Council of the Cleveland Museum of Art.


Affinity Group Talk: New Narratives: Interpretation at the CMA

Wednesday, February 7, 2024, 6:00–7:00 p.m.

John C. and Sally S. Morley Family Foundation Lecture Hall

FREE to members of Column & Stripe and Friends of African and African American Art

Affinity group members are invited to join Rachel Arzuaga, interpretive planner, as she discusses the role of museum interpretation at the CMA as it relates to the exhibition New Narratives: Contemporary Works on Paper, touching specifically on the Jacob Lawrence series presented in the show. 

Guests are encouraged to join Rachel in the galleries after the lecture to view the exhibition and ask questions. 


Sensory-Friendly Saturdays at the CMA

Saturday, February 17, 2024, 9:00–10:00 a.m.


Sensory-Friendly Saturdays offer adaptations to meet diverse sensory-processing needs on the third Saturday of each month. Guests on the autism spectrum, people experiencing dementia, and people of all ages who have intellectual or developmental disabilities are invited to participate in a calming museum experience with less stimulation, before the museum opens to the public—reducing crowds, noise, and distractions. Guests can explore the galleries at their own pace, relax in the designated “quiet area,” and share this time and space with open-minded members of the community. 

Here are some things to know before planning your visit:  

  • All guests must pass through metal detectors at the entrance of the museum. 
  • Guests are encouraged to bring adaptive equipment, including wheelchairs, walkers, noise-reducing headphones, and technology. The Cleveland Museum of Art also offers a limited number of wheelchairs. 
  • The Cleveland Museum of Art’s store will be open at 9:00 a.m.    
  • Sensory-Friendly Saturdays are free. Parking in the garage is $14 for nonmembers, $7 for members.   
  • Once guests enter on Saturdays, they are welcome to stay for the day. Museum doors open at 10:00 a.m. to the public. 



Exploring Etching

Saturday, February 17, 2024, 11:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m.

Ames Family Atrium


Every third Saturday of each month, stop by the Ames Family Atrium between 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. to get a firsthand look at the art-making process. Each session provides the opportunity to engage and interact with a different Northeast Ohio maker during pop-up demonstrations and activities. See their work unfold and learn how artists create. Explore a related selection of authentic objects from the CMA’s education art collection in a pop-up Art Up Close session. See, think, and wonder.  

Explore the process of etching with Zygote Press, a local fine-art printmaking studio. Join printmaker Michael Whitehead as he explains the tools and process behind making an etching. Then, with artist Amirah Cunningham, use an etching press to create your very own print inspired by one of the works in the exhibition New Narratives: Contemporary Works on Paper.



Framing Recently Conserved Textiles: Two Case Studies

Wednesday, February 21, 2024, 12:00 p.m.

Ames Family Atrium

Meet at the Information Desk

FREE; ticket required

Have you ever wondered how artworks in the CMA’s collection are cared for? Join CMA conservators and technicians for guided tours of the galleries. Investigate artists’ materials and processes and learn about how the museum preserves artworks for the future.  

How does the museum make decisions about framing works of art, specifically textiles? In this program, frame technician Dave Piurek, conservator of textiles Robin Hanson, and cabinetmaker Bob Bochik discuss the recent textile conservation framing projects for Marguerite Zorach’s The Family (In Memory of a Summer in the White Mountains) and the German embroidered altar cloth Christ Gathering Roses on view in gallery 115. These two projects resulted in two very different framing solutions.


The Robert P. Madison Family Distinguished Lecture in African and African American Art

Ethiopian Christianity through the Looking Glass

Saturday, February 24, 2024, 2:00–3:00 p.m.

Gartner Auditorium

FREE; ticket required

Alexandra Sellassie Antohin (PhD, University College London) has conducted ethnographic research with Orthodox Christian communities in northeastern Ethiopia and the Russian Far East and historical research on the Russian Church in Alaska. These projects studied how liturgical participation, such as at places of worship and pilgrimage events, plays a dynamic and sustained role in people’s devotional engagements. Her past scholarly contributions include analyses of the centrality of the covenant as a prevailing principle in narrative, ritual, material, and social dimensions for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians, the culture of commemoration, such as popular observances of feasting and fasting, and the role of lay associations in mobilizing diocese projects and church expansion. 

The eastern African country now called Ethiopia has been home to a vibrant Christian culture since 330 CE, second only to Armenia, and even predating Rome. The arts of this region are featured in the CMA’s upcoming exhibition Africa & Byzantium, on view fromApril 14 to July 21, 2024. In her talk, Antohin considers how historical ideas about Ethiopian Christianity remain relevant today, echoing themes from the exhibition about the contemporary impact of historical artworks.

“Ethiopia stretches her hands unto God,” the legend of Queen Sheba and King Solomon, the material presence of the Ark of the Covenant in Axum: for Ethiopian Orthodox Christians, these are prized and deeply ingrained forms of historical narratives, spiritual truth, and indigenous philosophical ethos. This presentation outlines key points of reference for how the covenant is understood in Ethiopia as well as by audiences attracted to and intrigued by its narrative of exceptionalism. How do tropes of Ethiopia as a land of a “biblically rooted way of life” contribute to the local and global consciousness that shapes Ethiopian articulations of itself as a place of spiritual significance? Reframing the covenant as expanding beyond Ethiopian religious and political exceptionalism offers a timely reappraisal of this concept in light of increased social fragmentation and the urgency for negotiating harmony in a country with many forms of diversity. 


Continuing Exhibitions 

Nature Supernatural

Through Sunday, March 3, 2024

Gallery 242B


Trees and other plants endowed with supernatural qualities have a long history in the visual culture and literature of India. Throughout the South Asian subcontinent, many populations recognize the power of divinities who personify the life-giving forces of nature to confer gifts of abundance: food, wealth, and children. In art, an image of a woman or goddess of child-bearing age could visually signal the same ideal as depictions of trees or other types of vegetation bearing fruits and flowers. This ideal is auspiciousness, which refers to the success and good fortune brought by entities that give and support life. Filling spaces with vegetal imagery communicates plenitude and auspiciousness, which, in turn, are considered visually beautiful. 

In paintings, textiles, and jewelry, images of supernatural plants mark the presence of magic associated with the powers of nature. Individual flowers also connote specific concepts to the knowledgeable viewer. The lotus, a water flower, signals birth, creation, preservation, and transcendence. Narcissus, which blooms in early spring, references mystical renewal or rebirth. Roses are used in the context of love and fidelity.  

Talking trees, animal-bearing plants, and other supernatural aspects of nature feature in stories that circulated among travelers across land and sea routes connecting India with the greater Islamic world. The works in this gallery reveal how extraordinary vegetative imagery resonated internationally and across religious and social divides.


Colors of Kyoto: The Seifū Yohei Ceramic Studio

Through Sunday, March 10, 2024

Julia and Larry Pollock Focus Gallery | Gallery 010


Colors of Kyoto: The Seifū Yohei Ceramic Studio showcases works in porcelain and stoneware made by the Kyoto-based studio of Seifū Yohei from the late 19th to the mid-20th century. While the studio is known for the role of Seifū Yohei III (1851–1914) as an Imperial Household Artist (Teishitsu gigei’in), it has only recently received sustained scholarly attention. The exhibition is the first in North America to comprehensively examine the studio’s output from the time of its founder, Seifū Yohei I (1801–1861), through that of its fourth-generation head, Seifū Yohei IV (1871–1951). This fulsome presentation of their creations is made possible through a gift of more than 100 individual and sets of works from the James and Christine Heusinger Collection, an assemblage strategically acquired over the past three decades with the goal of representing the full range of forms and styles produced under the Seifū Yohei name. The show and its catalogue also use the collection as a lens through which to analyze aspects of the modernization of Japan and to consider the history of international trade. 

Just over 400 years ago, ceramists in Japan first successfully fired porcelain, and from the mid-1600s, Japan took advantage of a gap in the global porcelain trade left by the temporary exit of China from the market, following the demise of the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) and the maritime prohibitions of the early Qing dynasty (1644–1911), to secure orders for its porcelains in Europe. 

From the late 1800s, participation of Japanese ceramists in international expositions also became a forum for constructing national identity. While it has garnered less attention in exhibitions and publications outside Japan, there was a robust domestic market for Japanese porcelains as well, including vessels for use in sencha, or Chinese-style tea, gatherings. Colors of Kyoto features works by members of the Seifū family that reflect both the ceramics culture of Kyoto, an ancient city and former capital of Japan, and the artists’ engagement with Chinese forms and techniques as an alternative way to bring Japanese porcelain into the modern era at a time when Western cultures were leaving a major mark in Japan. 

Colors of Kyoto: The Seifū Yohei Ceramic Studio is funded in part with a generous award from the Japan Foundation 2023 Exhibitions Abroad Support Program.


Francis Alÿs: Paradox of Praxis 5

Through Sunday, March 17, 2024

Video Project Room | Gallery 224B


In Paradox of Praxis 5, Francis Alÿs is shown kicking a flaming soccer ball at night through the streets of Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, until it finally extinguishes. Filmed over hours, this durational task becomes a performance of futile labor and exertion, as well as one of impending peril. The title of the work heightens the irony of the exercise, conjuring allusions to the piece as a metaphor for artistic practice in general. Alÿs is a Belgium-born artist who moved to Mexico City in 1986 and has lived and worked there ever since. His distinctly poetic and imaginative artworks are often centered on observations of, and engagements with, everyday life, which the artist describes as being “composed of episodes, metaphors, or parables.”  

Courtesy of the artist and David Zwirner 


Six Dynasties of Chinese Painting

Through Sunday, September 1, 2024

Clara T. Rankin Galleries of Chinese Art | Gallery 240A 


Six Dynasties of Chinese Painting presents a selection of the museum’s most important paintings that cover six different dynasties, including the modern era. These paintings represent various subject matter, from figures, landscapes, animals, birds, and flowers to religious and historical themes; their dates of acquisition range from the museum’s founding years to the most recent additions, demonstrating a continuous commitment to Chinese painting, a field that has always been the strongest asset of the Chinese collection.


To the River’s South in Japanese Painting 

Through Sunday, June 2, 2024
The Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation Japanese Art Galleries | Gallery 235A


The Chinese words jiang, or “river,” and nan, or “south,” together form the region name Jiangnan, or “river’s south.” The river is the Yangzi River, or “Long River,” that flows from west to east across China, emptying into the sea near the city of Shanghai. The “south” is a constellation of cities, mountain ranges, lakes, and rivers reaching as far west as Mount Lu, about eight hours from Shanghai by car (684 kilometers, or 425 miles). Core episodes in Chinese history and literature were set in or inspired by these sites. Transmitted through text and image, records and representations of Jiangnan occupied a significant position in the lives of creators and consumers of culture across East and Southeast Asia in the centuries leading up to the present. Some of the paintings and painted ceramics in this gallery show how Japanese artists of the past portrayed two landmarks in Jiangnan, Mount Lu and West Lake, and Xiao-Xiang, a place located physically west of Jiangnan but an important touch point in artistic productions from that region. 


Liturgical Textiles from Late Medieval Germany

Through Sunday, August 4, 2024

Gallery 115


The Cleveland Museum of Art has a particularly rich selection of liturgical textiles (textiles used during religious ceremonies) from the Middle Ages (about 500–1500). In cathedrals, monasteries, and parish churches, they were used at many different points of church life. They covered the altar table, were used during mass, or served as vestments, or garments, for the clergy. They were usually richly decorated with pictorial programs, allowing insights into the thinking and piety of each time period.

They were often produced within monastic communities. Nuns, in particular, are believed to have made textiles. In the late Middle Ages (about 1200–1500), production increased sharply, and especially in Italy, textiles were also produced industrially on a large scale and delivered throughout Europe.

Textiles are particularly sensitive to light, and accordingly, they can only be exhibited for a limited period in order to preserve their colors and fabrics for later generations by keeping them in a dark, climate-controlled space.


Ancient Andean Textiles

Through Sunday, December 8, 2024

Jon A. Lindseth and Virginia M. Lindseth, PhD, Galleries of the Ancient Americas | Gallery 232 

Between about 3000 BCE and the early 1500s CE, ancient Andean weavers created one of the world’s most distinguished textile traditions in both artistic and technical terms. Within this time span, the most impressive group of early textiles to survive was made by the Paracas people of Peru’s south coast. Most artistically elaborate Andean textiles served as garments.


Native North American Textiles and Works on Paper

Through Sunday, December 8, 2024

Sarah P. and William R. Robertson Gallery | Gallery 231

Newly on display from the permanent collection are two Diné (Navajo) textiles from the late 1800s and early 1900s, both of them rugs woven for the collector’s market, modeled on the Diné shoulder blanket. Also new on view is a watercolor from the 1920s by the Pueblo artist Oqwa Pi (Abel Sanchez), who was key to a major development in Southwest Indigenous arts as Natives took control of representing their own cultures after centuries of marginalization.


On-Site Collection Tours 

Guided Tours 

Tuesday through Friday, 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. 

Saturday and Sunday, 1:00 p.m.

FREE; ticket required

Join a public tour to learn new perspectives and enjoy great storytelling about works in the museum’s collection. Tours depart from the information desk in the Ames Family Atrium. Tickets may be reserved at cma.org or on-site at the ticket desk. Tours are limited to 15 participants per group. 


CMA Community Arts Center On-Site Activities  

2937 West 25th Street, Cleveland, OH 44113 

Free parking in the lot off Castle Avenue | Estacionamiento gratis en la Avenida Castle 


Comic Club | Club de Cómic with Juan Fernandez (se habla español)

Saturday, February 3, 2024, 11:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.


Learn to juggle words with images in unexpected ways with artist Juan Fernandez. Work in the company of others to create a page of comics, drawings, or poetry for a published zine to be released for free at the following workshop. Reserve your spot today!

Free. All ages. All experience levels. Supplies included. Reserve your spot by emailing commartsinfo@clevelandart.org.  

Aprende a jugar con palabras e imágenes de maneras inesperadas con artista Juan Fernandez (se habla español). Trabaja en compañía de otros para crear una página de cómics, dibujos o poesía para un zine publicado lanzado de forma gratuita en el próximo taller. ¡Reserva tu cupo ahorita!

Gratis. Todos edades. Todos los niveles de experiencia. Suministros incluidos. Reserva tu cupo y envíe un mensage a commartsinfo@clevelandart.org.


Family FUNdays | Día De Alegria Familiar at the CAC 

Sunday, February 4, 2024, 1:00–3:00 p.m.


Enjoy free family fun and explore art celebrating community. This event features family-friendly games, movement-based activities, and art making, Open to all ages and abilities!

Únase a nosotros para divertirse con familia, mientras exploramos el arte celebrando comunidad. Gratis para participar. Juegos para toda la familia, actividades basadas en movimientos, y creación de arte. ¡Abiertas a todos los edades y habilidades!

Major annual support is provided by Brenda and Marshall Brown, Mr. and Mrs. Walter E. Fortney, Florence Kahane Goodman, Eva and Rudolf Linnebach, and the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation. Generous annual support is provided by an anonymous supporter, the M. E. and F. J. Callahan Foundation, Char and Chuck Fowler, the Giant Eagle Foundation, the Lloyd D. Hunter Memorial Fund, Marta Jack and the late Donald M. Jack Jr., Bill and Joyce Litzler, the Logsdon Family Fund for Education, William J. and Katherine T. O’Neill, Mandi Rickelman, Betty T. and David M. Schneider, the Sally and Larry Sears Fund for Education Endowment, Roy Smith, Paula and Eugene Stevens, the Trilling Family Foundation, and the Womens Council of the Cleveland Museum of Art. 


Chinese New Year | Año Nuevo Chino with Youwen Zhang

Sunday, February 4, 2024, 1:00–4:00 p.m.


Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival, marks the onset of the lunar new year—a significant traditional celebration in Chinese culture. This festive occasion is characterized by various customs, family reunions, feasts, and an association with the Chinese zodiac, where each year corresponds to one of the 12 animal signs. In 2024, the Year of the Dragon is ushered in. In the Chinese zodiac, the dragon symbolizes strength, good luck, and power. It is considered an opportune time for new beginnings, signifying a chapter of potential and positive transformations. 

Join artist Youwen Zhang at the Community Arts Center to learn more about the holiday and create your own dragon ornament to usher in the New Year. Youwen’s diverse educational and artistic background allows her to bring a wealth of creativity, cultural richness, and a deep understanding of art education to every project.  

Free. All ages. All experience levels. Supplies included. Drop in; no registration required. 

El Año Nuevo Chino, también conocido como el Festival de Primavera, marca el inicio del año nuevo lunar, una celebración tradicional importante en la cultura china. Esta ocasión festiva se caracteriza por diversas costumbres, reuniones familiares, fiestas y una asociación con el horóscopo chino, donde cada año corresponde a uno de los 12 signos animales. En 2024, se inicia el Año del Dragón. En el horóscopo chino, el dragón simboliza la fuerza, la buena suerte y el poder. Se considera un momento oportuno para nuevos comienzos, lo que significa un capítulo de transformaciones potenciales y positivas. 

Te invitamos al Centro de Artes Comunitarias con artista Youwen Zhang para obtener más información sobre la festividad y crear su propio adorno de dragón para dar la bienvenida al Año Nuevo. La diversa formación educativa y artística de Youwen le permite aportar una gran cantidad de creatividad, riqueza cultural y un profundo conocimiento de la educación artística a cada proyecto. 

Gratis. Todas las edades. Todos los niveles de experiencia. Suministros incluidos. Sin cita previa; no es necesario registrarse. 


Mr. Wal Café Miniatures | Sr. Wal Miniaturas Café with Michelle Littlejohn, a.k.a. Starrelish

Saturday, February 10, 2024, 10:00 a.m.–12:00 p.m., and Sunday, February 11, 2024, 1:00–3:00 p.m.


Join Cleveland artist Michelle Littlejohn, a.k.a. Starrelish, at the Community Arts Center. During these workshops, participants explore Vanilla Star Café, the tiny coffee shop of a squirrel, Mr. Wal. Over two days, you can create some of the cafe’s most popular hot drinks and tasty treats. Day one focuses on miniature wearable hot drinks with UV resin; day two, miniature bread and croissants with oven-baked clay. Participants also receive a copy of the newly released Mr. Wal comic.

Michelle is an illustrator and comic book artist who also makes stickers, prints, pins, and crafts! In 2010, she founded Studio J. S., a book publishing company with her brother, Miguel C. Hernández. The two specialize in making comics, designs, sequential art, and creative concepts while aiming to produce inspiring stories and adventures for the world to enjoy. Michelle also loves teaching in the Greater Cleveland community and spending time with her large family.

Free. All ages. All experience levels. Supplies included. Attend one or both workshops. Reservations required by emailing commartsinfo@clevelandart.org.

Únase a la artista de Cleveland Michelle Littlejohn, también conocida como Starrelish, en el Centro de Artes Comunitarias. Durante estos talleres, los participantes exploran Vanilla Star Café, la pequeña cafetería de una ardilla, el Sr. Wal. Durante dos dias puedes crear algunas de las bebidas calientes y pan dulces más populares de la cafetería. El primer día se centra en bebidas calientes portátiles en miniatura con resina UV; segundo día, pan en miniatura y croissants con barro cocido al horno. Los participantes también recibirán una copia del cómic del Sr. Wal recién publicado.

Michelle es una ilustradora y artista de cómics que también hace pegatinas, impresiones, pines y manualidades. En 2010, fundó Studio J. S., una editorial de libros con su hermano, Miguel C. Hernández. Los dos se especializan en la creación de cómics, diseños, arte secuencial y conceptos creativos, con el objetivo de producir historias y aventuras inspiradoras para que el mundo las disfrute. A Michelle también le encanta enseñar en la comunidad de Cleveland y pasar tiempo con su numerosa familia.

Gratis. Todas las edades. Todos los niveles de experiencia. Suministros incluidos. Asiste a uno o ambos talleres. Se requieren reservaciones por correo electrónico commartsinfo@clevelandart.org.


Remember Love Recovery Project | Proyecto de Recuperación Recuerda el Amor with Patty Bode

Saturday, February 17, 2024, 1:00–4:00 p.m., and Sunday, February 18, 2024, 1:00–4:00 p.m.


Make recovery flags with the Remember Love Recovery Project at the Community Arts Center as an opportunity to destigmatize addiction disorder through art, education, and human connection. Pour your compassion into your recovery flag with endless possibilities. Give gratitude. Harbor hope. Forge forgiveness. Memorialize the many. Produce positivity. Participants from all walks of life are invited. Our common humanity connects us with the struggles of people with addiction disorder and the families and friends who care about them.

Join Patty Bode, founder of the Remember Love Recovery Project, for this chance to explore different mediums, such as painting, drawing, and textile, and to include symbols, written words, or images in the creation of your own recovery flag.

Free. No registration required. All ages. All experience levels. Supplies included. Attend one or both workshops.

Haga banderas de recuperación con el Proyecto de Recuperación Recuerda el Amor en el Centro de Artes Comunitarias como una oportunidad para desestigmatizar el trastorno de adicción a través del arte, educación y conexión humana. Vierte tu compasión en tu Bandera de Recuperación con infinitas posibilidades. Da gratitud. Abriga esperanza. Forja el perdón. Conmemorar a los muchos. Produce positividad. Se invita a participantes de todos los ámbitos de la vida. Nuestra humanidad común nos conecta con las luchas de las personas con trastorno de adicción y las familias y amigos que se preocupan por ellos.

Únase a Patty Bode, fundadora del Proyecto de Recuperación Recuerda el Amor, para esta Ooportunidad de explorar diferentes medios como la pintura, el dibujo y los textiles e incluir símbolos, palabras escritas o imágenes en la creación de su propia marca de recuperación.

Gratis. No es necesario registrarse. Todas las edades. Todos los niveles de experiencia. Suministros incluidos. Asiste a uno o ambos talleres.


Open Studio at the CAC | Estudio Abierto

Weekly, Saturdays and Sundays, 1:00–4:00 p.m.

Enjoy free, drop-in art making. A monthly theme connects community, art, and exploration.

Disfrute el arte con toda la familia. Gratis para participar. Cada mes presenta una temática connectando el arte, la comunidad y la exploración.

The Cleveland Museum of Art is funded in part by residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.

Education programs are supported in part by the Ohio Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Ohio and the National Endowment for the Arts.

All exhibitions at the Cleveland Museum of Art are underwritten by the CMA Fund for Exhibitions. Principal annual support is provided by Michael Frank and the late Pat Snyder, the John and Jeanette Walton Exhibition Fund, the late Roy L. Williams, and Margaret and Loyal Wilson. Generous annual support is provided by an anonymous supporter, the late Dick Blum and Harriet Warm, Gary and Katy Brahler, Cynthia and Dale Brogan, Dr. Ben and Julia Brouhard, Brenda and Marshall Brown, Richard and Dian Disantis, the Jeffery Wallace Ellis Trust in memory of Lloyd H. Ellis Jr., Leigh and Andy Fabens, the Frankino-Dodero Family Fund for Exhibitions Endowment, Florence Kahane Goodman, Janice Hammond and Edward Hemmelgarn, Marta Jack and the late Donald M. Jack Jr., Carl T. Jagatich, Eva and Rudolf Linnebach, William S. and Margaret F. Lipscomb, Bill and Joyce Litzler, the Roy Minoff Family Fund, Lu Anne and the late Carl Morrison, Jeffrey Mostade and Eric Nilson and Varun Shetty, Tim O’Brien and Breck Platner, William J. and Katherine T. O’Neill, Michael and Cindy Resch, Betty T. and David M. Schneider, the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation, Paula and Eugene Stevens, the Womens Council of the Cleveland Museum of Art, and Claudia Woods and David Osage.


All education programs at the Cleveland Museum of Art are underwritten by the CMA Fund for Education. Major annual support is provided by Brenda and Marshall Brown, Mr. and Mrs. Walter E. Fortney, Eva and Rudolf Linnebach, and the Kelvin and Eleanor Smith Foundation. Generous annual support is provided by an anonymous supporter, the M. E. and F. J. Callahan Foundation, Char and Chuck Fowler, the Giant Eagle Foundation, the Lloyd D. Hunter Memorial Fund, Marta Jack and the late Donald M. Jack Jr., Bill and Joyce Litzler, the Logsdon Family Fund for Education, William J. and Katherine T. O’Neill, Mandi Rickelman, Betty T. and David M. Schneider, the Sally and Larry Sears Fund for Education Endowment, Roy Smith, Paula and Eugene Stevens, the Trilling Family Foundation, and the Womens Council of the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Contact the Museum's Media Relations Team:
(216) 707-2261