Cahoon Museum of American Art Opens for the Season

The Cahoon Museum of American Art in Cotuit, MA announces the opening of its exhibition season on Tuesday, March 17th. The Museum is offering eight changing exhibitions that include artworks dating from 19th century American scrimshaw through contemporary art, with a full range of fine art and craft media represented.

The season kicks off with three featured exhibitions. Modern Mix includes a selection of artwork from the collections of both the Cape Cod Museum of Art and the Cahoon Museum. The exhibition tells the parallel stories of the founding of both museums in the early 1980s and highlights include well known Cape artists such as Sam Feinstein, Arnold Geissbuhler, Betty Lane, Claire Leighton, William Littlefield, Donald Stoltenberg, and a giant mobile by Arthur Bauman. Also on view this spring is Edward Curtis: Shadow Catcher, a selection of early 20th century photogravures on loan from a private collection. Curtis’ renowned body of work, The North American Indian, remains one of the most significant records of Native American culture ever produced. The spring exhibitions will be on view through Sunday, May 10.

In addition, a large scale installation has been created especially for the Museum by artist Adria Arch. Oversized, colorful, and interconnected shapes emerge from the Museum’s lobby, pop out of hearths, tumble down stairwells and playfully encompass the Museum’s interactive family room. The installation remains on view throughout the year.

An opening reception for all exhibitions will be held on Friday, April 17 from 4:30 – 6:30pm.

This summer’s blockbuster, Scrimshaw: The Whaler’s Art, opens with a member preview on May 23. This comprehensive exhibition presents over 200 superb examples of scrimshaw, the 19th century nautical folk art form created at sea by whalers during the international whaling trade. The surprising history of this unique art form is explained through the stories of the makers and recipients of these intricately detailed items. The artist Ethan Murrow has been commissioned to create a wall mural to accompany the exhibition, which remains on view through October 25.

Also on view this summer is Ethan and Vita Murrow: The Whale. The exhibition features the original black-and-white graphite illustrations by Ethan Murrow created for The Whale, a picture book produced in collaboration with his wife, author Vita Murrow. The series of stunning photorealistic drawings tells the story of two young adventurers in search of a spotted whale. They convey the drama and haunting beauty of the ocean and capture the majesty of the awe-inspiring whale.

From September through December, a selection of carvings by self-taught wood carver Mark A. Perry will be on view. Perry’s work reflects the emotional spirit of folk art masterpieces that serve as his inspiration, interpreted by the artist with contemporary flair.

Rounding out the season, the Museum will debut 18 original fiber art illustrations by Falmouth artist Salley Mavor for her new book, My Bed. The exhibition, titled Bedtime Stitches, features scenes of children from around the world and highlights the mastery of her astounding hand-stitched technique.
Selected works by Ralph and Martha Cahoon and the Cahoon Studio remain on view all season.

The Museum hosts over 100 educational programs, family friendly events, open houses, gallery talks and tours, and has a museum shop stocked with specialty items. The Museum’s 30th annual fundraiser, the Brush Off Art Action and Festival, will take place on July 11 on the Cotuit Village Green. Additional information about the exhibitions, events and programs can be found on the Museum’s website,


The Cahoon Museum of American Art is located at 4676 Falmouth Road (Rt. 28) in Cotuit, MA. The Museum opens for the season on March 17, 2020. Museum hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 10am-4pm and Sunday 1-4pm. To contact the Museum, email or call (508) 428-7581.

Annie Dean,
phone: 508-428-7581, x5

Author: Mashpee Chamber of Commerce

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