Exploring the human conception of motherhood at the MassArt Art Museum

This week, GBH Arts Editor Jared Bowen sits down with the Morning Edition team to bring you the latest exhibits from Boston’s art museums.

Design motherhood

Now at the MassArt Art Museum until December 18

This free exhibition at MassArt Museum of Art is “an exceptionally timely thing to do this weekend,” according to Bowen. “Designing Motherhood” takes viewers through the story of pregnancy, birth and motherhood, motivated by the fact that “it affects all of us, we are all born,” as curator Michelle Millar Fisher explains. . “We wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that one act,” Millar says.

The exhibition’s curators hope “Designing Motherhood” will challenge the public’s understanding of human reproduction and what it means to be a mother in an age when so many modern pregnancy resources come from “people without wombs designed for people with uterus,” says curator Michelle Miller Fisher. The works on display range from photography to historical technologies to sculpture, including an artist’s interpretation of their wooden pregnant belly.

Draw the curtain

Now at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum until 9/11

Maurice Sendak is perhaps best known for his work as an author and illustrator, notably for his 1963 children’s book where the wild things are. A new exposure at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, however, presents another facet of Sendak’s career: his work in designing sets and costumes for opera.

Sendak designed elements not only for a lyrical adaptation of where the wild things arebut also of Mozart The magic fluteby Prokofiev The Love of Three Orangesand Nutcracker among others. As Bowen describes it, the exhibit is “fun”, because “you walk in and you encounter music, you encounter real scenery and scenery, and you can feel the 3D elements of its design”.

Curator Diana Greenwald says that “you feel like there are these little breadcrumbs of her identity popping up” in Sendak’s featured work. Sendak describes himself as “having grown up Jewish, gay, [and] chronically ill,” and many of his stories feature themes of strength, childhood resilience, and adventure — all of which are reflected in “Drawing the Curtain.”

Drawing the curtain: drawings by Maurice Sendak for the opera and the ball

Amanda Guerra/Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum,

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