One of San Diego’s many hidden little treasures is the Mingei International Museum tucked away in the center of Balboa Park. You won’t find any works by the likes of Picasso, Matisse or Van Gogh, but what you will find are uniquely hand-crafted folk and design art from over from 141 countries.
The art at the Mingei comes in many forms, from what you would traditionally consider art, like paintings and sculptures, to a wide variety of forms including clothing, furniture, jewelry, and pottery. Over the years it has become one of my favorite museums in town, but it had never occurred to me to take my kids there until I learned recently of their special Family Sunday event that they hold on the third Sunday of every month.
I took my kids last month and we had an awesome time. After giving them the “library voices” and “look with your eyes, not your hands” talk, we grabbed our scavenger hunt materials and were off. The kids loved following along with the clues and then trying to find the matching piece of art. Mid-way through the scavenger hunt we made a pit stop at the craft table, which just happened to also be doing Henna tattoos.
After a little painting and tatting, we were back to find the rest of the scavenger hunt items.
Though their three and five year old minds could not fully appreciate what they were seeing, I really loved exposing them to the inside of a museum and to all the various cultural, artistic items represented there at the Mingei.
At the end of the scavenger hunt, my daughters turned in their filled-out forms to collect their goodie bags complete with markers, coloring books and all sorts of fun items. Every month the theme and the crafts change, based on the current exhibits. And? It only costs $5.00 per family. What a great deal!
The next Family Sunday is scheduled for March 18th from 12:00 – 4:00pm. The art project is book making, led by local artist Liza Alvarez. Your kiddos can create their own mini-tome with paper, stamps, ribbon, stickers and more. Hope to see you there!