Local museum hosts free night for students

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The McNay Art Museum will offer local college students a free night of art, music and food.

By Y. Arroyo


The McNay Art Museum will host its fourth Free College Night 8-11 p.m. Nov. 18.

The museum will have a free coffee and dessert bar, free admission to “Telling Tales: Contemporary Narrative Photography” and live music from Harvey McLaughlin & the BottomFeeders and Sioux & Fox.

The “Telling Tales” exhibit is a collection of 17 artists’ large-scale photographs with themes of humor and mystery. They depict daily life, family, a portrait of a bride holding a python and other scenes.

The exhibit will also feature “six-word stories” from creative writing students at Trinity University, translating what the photographs showed and the worlds they suggested.

The night allows college students to explore an exhibit after hours, said Kate Carey, director of education.

“Free admission is important because we’re interested in planting the seed of art appreciation and the love of learning at all levels,” Carey said. “It’s a way to eliminate any barriers to enjoy the museum.”

The night is expected to be different from those of previous years. This year the museum partnered with the music venue Paper Tiger, which helped pick the bands that are going to perform, and this year will be focused on photography and photography-based activities.

“McNay members will be limited to the exhibit that night, but we’ll also have the sculpture terrace with the bands, and there will be food indoors,” Carey said. “It’ll be like coming to an opening for an exhibition, except that it’s strictly for college students.”

The museum has also seen many repeat students.

“We see more and more each year. We had almost 500 last year, and we see them coming in groups with their friends. We’re hoping we have a big great turnout this year,” Carey said.

The museum is always free for students who visit on an instructor-led tour, Carey said. It’s also free for teens 13-19 through a two-year grant from the John L. Santikos Charitable Foundation Fund. The grant ends next year.

The museum is also free to the public 4-9 p.m. Thursdays and the first Sunday of the month.

“I want this to be a regular place to meet up, feel inspired, or a place to take a study-break,” Carey said. “I think the McNay is a great place to take an ‘art break,’ so to speak.”


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