Kids can imagine themselves as their favorite pets, make animal craft projects and interact with art on display at a free event Saturday at ASU Art Museum.
"Fur, Feathers and Family: Our Relationship With Animals" is the theme of the sixth annual Family Fun Day 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The corresponding collection of 80 paintings, prints and sculptures in the exhibit explores the relationships between animals and people and will be on display through Aug. 6.
Each year organizers brainstorm what kind of art they can use to create a kidfriendly exhibit, says Jean Makin, the museum’s print collection manager.
"As we were going through the print collection and the stacks, it just occurred to me that there are animals . . . depicted in many different ways (in art)," Makin says. In the show, animals are portrayed as pets, work animals, farm companions and attractions in circuses and zoos.
Family Fun Day includes a performance by the Great Arizona Puppet Theatre about a young boy "who tries to convince his mom that a dinosaur is a good pet," says the museum’s curator of education, Laura Stewart.
Children also will be invited to perform as animals in an expressionistic dance with Rayn Dance Troupe of Tempe. "They will be asking children to observe farm animals and then imitate their movements and vocal expressions," she says.
Fiber artist and ASU professor Mark Newport will teach knitting in the gallery where his current "Super Heroics" exhibition of 12 knitted superhero costumes is displayed.
Eight work stations will feature stamping, rubbing and stencil activities. Kids can make Japanese carp kites, animal totem poles and paper bag puppets.
An interactive display lets kids put their faces and hands into a replica of a brightly colored Roy De Forest painting and then see themselves on television.
"We tried to make the (artwork) approachable to kids," Makin says. "The sculpture is set lower . . . and we made the text panels understandable to younger kids."
ASU Art Museum Family Fun Day
When: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday
Where: ASU Art Museum, southeast corner of Mill Avenue and 10th Street, Tempe
Information: (480) 965-2787 or http://asuartmuseum.asu.edu.
Parking is free in the lot near the ASU Ceramics Research Center, at the northeast corner of Mill Avenue and 10th Street.