Guide to Current Museum Exhibits - MetroFamily Magazine
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Guide to Current Museum Exhibits

Reading Time: 13 minutes 

Oklahoma City is home to many world-class museums and historical venues. Throughout the year, you can learn about a wide variety of topics through special exhibitions and displays.

This guide will help you find all the exhibits currently on display is museums across the OKC metro. This list is updated frequently, so check back often for new exhibits and other learning opportunities! You can also check out our guide to FREE museums in the metro.


American Banjo Museum

(9 E Sheridan Ave) 604-2793; Tuesday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sunday, noon – 5 p.m.
Adults, $8; kids (5-17), $6; kids (under 5), free; families (2 adults, 2 kids), $15

Women of Banjo

June 2020 – May 2021

Women of the Banjo chronicles the contributions of women to the colorful past, vibrant present and unlimited future of the banjo. From prominent contemporary performers such as Alison Brown and Rhiannon Giddens to pop icons Taylor Swift, Dolly Parton and many others, historic insights, instruments, stage attire, and a glimpse of ever-changing fashion trends all help in the telling of this important aspect of banjo history.


Edmond Fine Arts Institute

(27 E Edwards St, Edmond) 340-4481; Monday – Thursday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Friday, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.

The Gallery

Features the work of a different local artist each month.

  • December – Heather Porter
  • January – Matt Nelson
  • February – Jennifer Cocoma Hustis & Mark Hustis
  • March – Zonly Looman
  • April – James Coplin
  • May – Brad McNeil

Edmond Historical Society & Museum

(431 S Boulevard, Edmond) 340-0078; Tuesday – Friday, 10 a.m. – noon & 1:30 – 4 p.m.
Admission is free.

Darci Lynne’s Got Talent

Aug. 9, 2020 – Jan. 30, 2021

Darci Lynne was just twelve when she won NBC’s America’s Got Talent championship for her singing ventriloquist act. The Deer Creek student had gotten her start in 2014 by winning first place at the Edmond’s Got Talent competition. Now’s she’s a performing sensation, appearing on television shows and traveling around the county to sell-out crowds after having her own show in Las Vegas. Edmond Historical Society & Museum is proud to present America’s first-ever museum exhibit dedicated to Darci Lynne, a hometown hero. Artifacts featured include clothing from her television performances, her first practice puppets, tour posters, and scripts.

What’s Cooking, Edmond?

Oct. 16, 2020 – Aug. 2021
Whether eating off the land or taking modern-day “foodie” photos, the ways that people have experienced food is universally important. The story of how Edmond cooking has evolved from the Land Run of 1889 to the present. The exhibit starts with the pioneers who cooked over cast-iron pots, progresses through wartime rationing and the TV dinner and casseroles of the 1950s, ending with a look at today’s food trends. Artifacts include cooking implements, aprons, cookbooks and appliances. Of particular note are an early-1900s cookstove, uniquely made of steel, plus a 1950s fridge with classic rounded corners. Photographs will feature well-known restaurants, such as the Wide-A-Wake Café and Royce Café from Edmond’s past. Enjoy this exploration of the history of cooking in Edmond, from squirrel stew to avocado toast.

Back to the 1950s

March 2020 – January 2021

Back to the 1950s is a year-long exhibit that will change seasonally, with all artifacts being switched out for summer, fall, and winter and highlights prosperity and unrest in America. Each season will address new themes.

 


Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art 

(555 Elm, Norman) 325-4938; Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m.
Admission is free.

OK/LA

Sept. 10, 2020 – March 7, 2021

This exhibition features the work of six former Oklahomans who left the state in the late 1950s for Los Angeles: Patrick Blackwell, Joe Goode, Jerry McMillan, Ed Ruscha, Paul Rusch and Mason Williams. Their respective contributions in various media suggest the friends held similar sensibilities. Although each of the artists took a different path, the intersections between their lives and work over the decades, from their youth in Oklahoma to their relocation to and life in Southern California, constitute a shared history evident in their work over six decades.

Kiowa Agency: Stories of the Six

Oct. 1, 2020 – Jan. 17, 2021

Kiowa Agency: Stories of the Six refers to artists Spencer Asah, James Auchiah, Jack Hokeah, Stephen Mopope, Lois Smoky and Monroe Tsa-toke. The exhibition demonstrates how before and after their short residencies at OU, members of the Kiowa Six acted as strong agents of cultural preservation and transmission while navigating pressures of assimilation from the federal Kiowa Agency and external expectations for their artistic practices.


Mabee-Gerrer Museum Art

(1900 W MacArthur, Shawnee); Tuesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Adults, $5; kids (6-17), $3; Kids (5 & under), free. – Museum is currently offering free admission during July and August. Reservations are recommended.

Roberto Ugalde

May 8 – June 20, 2021

Roberto Ugalde is an adept oil painter who expresses the essence of his subjects in a way that draws the viewer into the painting. He masters the use of oils in an impressionistic manner which breaths life to his landscapes and figures.

Blessed Virgin: Images of the Virgin Mary

Dec. 19, 2020 –  Feb. 14, 2021

This exhibition will include works from the permanent collection of the MGMoA featuring the Virgin Mary from Medieval to Modern.  The works vary in medium, style, and country of origin to showcase the different ways that the Virgin Mary has been portrayed.


Myriad Gardens Visitor Center

(301 W Reno Ave) 445-7080; Monday & Tuesday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Wednesday-Saturday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Senior hour: Monday & Tuesday, 9-10 a.m.; ages 65 & up & caregivers.
Admission is free to see art. 

Virginia Sitzes: Navigating Back to My Birthday Suit

Dec. 3, 2020 – Jan. 12, 2021
Virginia Sitzes is a printmaker, painter, and muralist living in Oklahoma City. She has exhibited regionally taught workshops, been the drawing and painting liaison at Oklahoma Summer Arts Institute at Quartz Mountain, and is also a printmaking mentor for Artspace at Untitled’s high school mentorship program.

Still Here: The Cosmology of Black Resilience An Interdisciplinary Art Exhibition

Jan. 13 – March 2, 2021
“We come together as Black artists to acknowledge our place in the African diasporic continuum as flesh, blood, and spirit. Looking at the past, present, and future, our work asks the maker and the viewer, ‘What does it mean to be Black and resilient?’ We improvise to survive. We improvise to thrive. This is how we understand our place in the cosmos.”

Moore-Lindsay Historic House Museum

(508 N Peters Ave, Norman) 321-0156; Tuesday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – noon & 1 – 4 p.m.
Admission is free.

Victorian Christmas Exhibit

Nov. 24, 2020 – Jan. 9, 2021

Visit the Moore-Lindsay Historic House during the holiday season to enjoy the lavish Christmas decorations inside the 1899 Victorian home.  Learn about the beginnings of various Christmas traditions, and the uses of each room in the home during Victorian Christmas celebrations.


National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum

(1700 NE 63rd) 478-2250; Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m – 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon – 5 p.m.
Adults, $12.50; kids, (6-12), $5.57; kids (5 & under), free 

Wild Wooly Western Wildlife, in 3D

Oct. 2, 2020 – Jan. 3, 2021

The trans-Mississippi West and its watersheds, prairies, plains, canyons, and mountains have provided habitat for animals for millions of years.  Since humans came to this part of North America about 12,000 years ago, they hunted these animals for food, shelter, tools, and protection. But they also honored them through drawn, painted, and especially sculpted depictions of these animals. Drawing from the largest and most comprehensive sculpture collection of the American West, the exhibition features a selection of sculptures of bison, pronghorn, moose, mountain lions, bears, and other critters, in bronze, wood, and plaster from the 19th and 20th centuries—all from the museum’s own collection. Artists will include Laura Gardin Fraser, James Earle Fraser, Charles M. Russell, Joe De Yong, Henry Schrady, W. R. Leigh, Willard Stone, Gerald Balciar, and Michael Coleman.

Tucker Smith: A Celebration of Nature

Oct. 2, 2020 – Jan. 3, 2021

This exhibit will be retrospective, with work ranging from Smith’s early years as a professional artist to his most recent paintings. It will also present the breadth of subject matter he has tackled, with an emphasis on western wildlife, but also including camp and cowboy scenes, straight landscapes, a few foreign locales, and at least one railroad painting.

Blazing a Trail

Nov. 21, 2020 – May 16, 2021

2020 is the centennial for Women’s Suffrage in the United States. For most of the West, however, suffrage was realized years or even decades before the rest of the country. Blazing a Trail explores why Western Women as a whole were more successful than their Eastern counterparts in achieving polling parity with men.

Close Encounters: Western Wildlife

Nov. 25, 2020 – July 11, 2021

The animals of the American West are as iconic as the landscapes they inhabit. See raccoons, owls, deer, elk, bison, mountain lions, and more. Stand within inches of a grizzly. No binoculars or bear spray required.

Find Her West

Dec. 12, 2020 – May 16, 2021

The American West is difficult to define and far more complex than stereotypes suggest. It is a destination, an experience, an idea, and for some even home. It has few boundaries and crosses cultures, geography, socioeconomics, gender, age, and eras. Photographs and other archival items from the Museum’s Dickinson Research Center reveal this diversity.

Spiro and the Native American Art of the Mississippian World

Feb. 12, 2021 – April 28, 2021

The Spiro people, and their Mississippian peers, are nearly forgotten in the pages of North American history, yet they created one of the most exceptional and highly developed societies in all of the Americas. This exhibition explores the archaeological and historical data connecting the Spiro site and its people to other communities throughout North and Central America.


Oklahoma City Museum of Art

(415 Couch Dr) 236-3100; Wednesday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday, noon – 5 p.m.
Adults, $12; kids (17 & under), free – Complimentary admission offered twice a year during the Museum’s SONIC Free Family Days.

Share Lives, Distant Places: Recent Acquisitions in Photography

Oct. 17, 2020 – Jan. 10, 2021

Shared Lives, Distant Places highlights contemporary photographers who employ different photography styles—documentary, photojournalism, and street photography—to capture the global human experience, offering alternative ways of seeing and understanding the people, places, and events that shape the world in which we live.

Beaux Arts at 75

Nov. 7, 2020 – April 25, 2021

The Beaux Arts collection is an especially playful and eclectic body of work that includes everything from an idyllic summer landscape by a master Abstract Expressionist to a kitschy 1980s “altarpiece” featuring a pair of photorealistic Dalmatians.

Moving Vision: Op and Kinetic Art from the Sixties and Seventies

Feb. 20 – May 16, 2021

Moving Vision: Op and Kinetic Art from the Sixties and Seventies highlights one of the great strengths of the Museum’s permanent collection–OKCMOA’s extensive, high-quality holdings in Op (optical) and Kinetic (movement) art. Moving Vision will bring together approximately forty works.

The Painters of Pompeii: Roman Frescoes from the National Archaeological Museum, Naples

June 26, 2021 – Sept. 26, 2021

The exhibition features over 80 artifacts and artworks that were buried and preserved during the 79 AD eruption of Mount Vesuvius. During the exhibition, the museum plans to host a series of lectures in the Noble Theater with several of the most renowned scholars in the field of Ancient Roman Art and History.

Classes that will take attendees on virtual visits to Naples and Southern Italy exploring the history, culture, food and wine will begin in January. Additionally, kids can look forward to virtually exploring archeology, Roman deities and mythology through family-oriented virtual classes in the spring.

Illuminations: Rediscovering the Art of Dale Chihuly

Ongoing

This museum houses one of the most comprehensive collections of Chihuly glass in the country. See these delicate pieces of glass art alongside drawings and other works by Dale Chihuly.


Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center 

(11 NW 11th St) 951-0000; Wednesday – Monday, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Thursday, until 9 p.m. 
Admission is free.

Bright Golden Haze

Aug. 26, 2020 – Jan. 4, 2021

Oklahoma Contemporary’s new downtown location will open with the inaugural exhibition Bright Golden Haze. This insightful group exhibition will explore the ways in which artists use light to create place, both geographic and conceptual, inspired by both the uniquely influential quality of light and space in the state and the new building itself.

Fieldworks: Beyond Measure

Dec. 17, 2020 – April 19, 2021

Beyond Measure features works produced by Fieldworks project collaborators Todd Stewart and Robert Bailey. Professors Stewart and Bailey initiated this program at the University of Oklahoma in 2015. The interdisciplinary residency invites artists, scholars and students to artistically respond to the presence of humans in the American Southwest. Each summer, they visit sites where people have left traces on the land.

Robert Montgomery: The Stars Pulled Down For Real 

Dec. 24, 2020 – April 1, 2021

The Stars Pulled Down is a billboard of LED lights, will illuminate Oklahoma Contemporary’s North Lawn. The large-scale work about the built environment of contemporary cities adapts Ezra Pound’s essay Patria Mia, a 1913 tribute to the dazzling lights of New York.

Ed Ruscha: OKLA

Feb. 11 – July 5, 2021

This exhibition is a landmark survey of work by Oklahoma-raised, world-renowned artist Ed Ruscha, in his first-ever solo exhibition in his home state. Focusing on his groundbreaking drawings, prints, books, photos, films and graphic design, the exhibition will include works from all stages of his 60-year career. Oklahoma looms large in Ruscha’s work, as a source of inspiration and as a foundation on which his unique perspective on America was first formed. In 1955, he embarked on the first of many road trips — frequently referenced in his art. Ruscha has repeatedly been quoted saying everything he’s done was already part of him when he left Oklahoma at 18.

Crystal Z Campbell: Flight

Feb. 11 – June 21, 2021

Using light, sound and digital film projection, Flight explores the physical, architectural and cultural residue of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre into the present. Timed with the 100-year commemoration of the massacre, Flight transforms the Artist-in-Residence Studio and Gallery, adding depth to the themes and histories explored in Ed Ruscha: OKLA and Chakaia Booker: Shaved Portions. Crystal Z Campbell is a multidisciplinary artist of African-American, Filipino and Chinese descent who uses film, live performance, sound, painting, installation and writing to amplify underacknowledged histories and public secrets.

Campbell Art Park (11th & Broadway)

Chakaia Booker: Shaved Portions

March 11 – March 2020

Shaved Portions is a new work by renowned sculpture artist Chakaia Booker. Since the early 1990s, Booker has famously made energetic abstractions out of interwoven beams upholstered with discarded tires. Her expressionistic assemblages turn snarls of rubber fragments into large, elaborate and ornamental sculptures exploring ecological and social ideas of recombination and transformation. Shaved Portions reassembles tires into a towering, cathedral-like space that viewers may enter, created from multiple spiny-edged loops, stacked and linked together in a configuration specially designed for the park.


Oklahoma Hall of Fame

(1400 Classen Dr.) 235-4458; Tuesday – Thursday, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.; Second Saturday, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. 
Adults, $7; kids (6-17), $5; kids (5 & under), free – Complimentary admission offered on the second Saturday of each month and Thursdays between Memorial & Labor Day.

The Visage of Modern Matriarchy: An Installation by DG Smalling and Nicole Moan

Oct. 6, 2020 – Jan. 21, 2021

Featuring two Oklahoma artists, DG Smalling and Nicole Moan, this exhibit visually explores the concepts of contemporary female warriors and reemerging matriarchy. Inspired by hope for change and reform offered through the Operation Lady Justice initiative, Smalling’s stylized portraits of contemporary female leaders emerge from continuous strong black lines influenced by Southeastern tribal hieroglyphs and bloom with organic shapes of bold, consistent color. Envisioning the ethereal armor of contemporary female warriors, Moan manifests this spiritual regalia in elaborate, textural, mixed-media vestments, featuring ceramic bodices, natural embellishments, and hand-crafted fabrics.

Makerspace Mural by Kristopher Kanaly

New to the Museum

Kristopher Kanaly is known for his bold, abstract street murals throughout Oklahoma City’s Plaza District and its downtown. Much like his street art, Kanaly is an Oklahoma inspiration with a passion as rich as the state’s history. No matter the city or assignment, Kanaly’s work is distinguishable by the bright colors, abstract figures, and hidden elements.


Oklahoma History Center

(800 Nazih Zuhdi) 522-0765; Monday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Adults, $10; kids (6-17), $5; kids (5 & under), free; families (up to 6 people), $25

Launch to Landing: Oklahomans and Space

Opening Nov. 17, 2020

This exhibit focuses on the many Oklahomans who played a part in the US air and space program, as well as early Oklahoma pioneers of aviation. The centerpiece of the exhibit is the Skylab 4 Apollo Command Module (CM-118). This spacecraft carried the final Skylab crew of astronauts—Gerald Carr (commander), Edward Gibson (science pilot), and William Pogue (pilot)—into space to live and work in the Skylab Orbiting Laboratory or Space Station. Launch to Landing will also feature a number of personal items utilized by astronauts and items that are generally associated with Oklahoma aviators and the U.S. air and space program, such as Oklahoma flags flown in space, a NASA Mission Control console, space shuttle heat shield tiles and lunar samples—also known as “moon rocks.”

In the Vernacular: Everyday Images of Oklahoma Life

June 22, 2020 – June 2021

In the Vernacular: Everyday Images of Oklahoma Life is a celebration of everyday image-making featuring thirty-two photographs from the Oklahoma Historical Society’s collections. Visitors will see fun, quirky, and sometimes odd images of Oklahomans. The photographs on display were captured for a variety of reasons, including souvenir postcards, government archives, magazines, newspapers, and family albums.

Until We Organize: The Struggle for Equal Rights Amendment

The exhibit features 23 photographs both local and national, from activists for and against the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). The exhibit focuses on the most tumultuous years of Oklahoma’s battle over the amendment, from the late 1970s to the early 1980s.

This exhibit is located in the Chesapeake Event Center and Gallery, which is used for meetings and events. Patrons should call in advance to make sure the room is open to the public on the day of your visit.

Ongoing

Crossroads of Commerce: A History of Free Enterprise in Oklahoma

This exhibit tells the story of economic development in Oklahoma through five time periods from 1716 to the present day, connecting the dots between history and economic development in a way that celebrates creativity and hard work and inspires young people to take a chance. The exhibit features a number of structural reproductions and interactive opportunities. Visitors will see an actual truss from the Wiley Post Hangar and enter the simulated cockpit of a Lockheed Vega airplane. Other features include scenes of a newspaper printing operation, grist mill, cotton gin, grain elevator, Cain’s Ballroom, a TG&Y store in the 1950s, the studios of WKY-Radio and WKY-TV, the Shelter Church Studio and the Thunder scoreboard from Chesapeake Energy Arena.


Sam Noble Museum 

(2401 Chautauqua, Norman) 325-4712; Wednesday – Saturday, 9 a.m. – noon & 2 – 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m. 
Adults, $8; kids (4 – 17), $5; kids (3 & under) free –  Promotion postponed: Free for children 17 and under on the first Monday of each month; complimentary admission offered at select events throughout the year.

Facing the Inferno

Nov. 21, 2020 – Jan. 17, 2021

The museum’s newest traveling exhibit, Facing the Inferno, the Wildfire Photography of Kari Greer, features photographs that examine the heightened fire activity seen across Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.

Places of Power

Jan. 6 – March 28, 2021

Places of Power: Painted Photographs of Sacred Landscapes by Corson Hirschfeld features breathtaking, hand-painted photographs of ancient, sacred spaces from over 20 different countries.

Dinosaurs: Land of Fire and Ice

Jan. 30 – May 23, 2021

Dinosaurs: Land of Fire and Ice features a brand-new exhibit created by Minnesota Children’s Museum that explores dinosaur habitats to better understand how these mysterious animals lived and use inquiry skills to examine what they left behind.


Science Museum Oklahoma

(2020 Remington Pl) 602-6664; Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. – Complimentary admission offered during the Museum’s Tinkerfest event.
Adults, $16.95; kids (3-12), $13.95

Prismatic Projections

Through Dec. 31, 2020

Provided through the generosity of the Kirkpatrick Family Fund, Prismatic Projections merges art and science into a piece designed to reveal the beauty and wonder hidden within a seemingly simple ray of sunlightThe exhibit captures natural sunlight and diffracts it onto the ground in a series of rainbows for you to investigate the resulting colorful spectrum. Prismatic Projections is SMO’s contribution to Oklahoma Contemporary Art Center and its inaugural exhibition, Bright Golden Haze: Reflections.

JUMBLE

Oct. 17, 2020 – Oct. 10, 2021

Created by artists Andy Arkley and Julie Alpert specifically for SMO, JUMBLE activates the senses by encouraging play and collaboration while experiencing joy. Up to 16 visitors at a time can interact with the exhibit by pressing buttons that will create a unique composition of sounds and visuals.


SKELETONS: Museum of Osteology

(10301 S Sunnylane Rd) 814-0006; Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday, 1 – 5 p.m. 
Adults, $11; kids (3-12), $9
Ongoing

From comparative anatomy to classification to adaptation and locomotion, SKELETONS has been designed with learning in mind! Currently displaying over 300 skeletons from all corners of the world, visitors have a unique opportunity to compare and contrast many rare species normally not seen in museum exhibits. In addition, The museum features a variety of North American specimens ranging from tiny mice and shrew skeletons to a 40 foot humpback whale.


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