You may have read about it already, or seen it on social media, but Art.com loves MOCHA. Oakland’s Museum of Children’s Arts’ mission is a great one —to “ensure that the arts are a fundamental part of the lives of all children through hands-on art experiences, arts training and curriculum for educators, and advocacy for the arts.”
We already helped support LEAP, MOCHA’s hands-on, library-based after-school arts program, and brought you information on that incredible curriculum. Our employees wanted to get even more involved, though, so we put on our aprons and headed over to volunteer!
After a drive through downtown Oakland that was spattered with unique street art, we arrived at the beautiful and historic MOCHA building. We were split into groups and sent off to different dusty corners to help give the museum a well-deserved refresh. With only three full-time members on staff and a summer full of students over, it definitely needed a fall cleaning.
One team tackled the basement, turning endless piles of craft supplies into tidy, organized walls with labels that said everything from “Papermaking Supplies” to “Pinecones.” More than one of us gathered inspiration for their own crafts thanks to poking through the stacks, and even our CEO who was willing to jump in and get her hands dirty.
Other groups painted walls and finished them with fun phrases and murals that were on the art theme, blasting music and working with projectors to outline the elements of art — Shape, Form, Space, and more. Another group refreshed the paint on doorways, in bathrooms, and other areas in the gallery space. Yet another group took on screen printing paper bags with the MOCHA logo, utilizing paint and paper to create a series of gorgeous gift bags. We scrubbed tiny handprints off of stools, cleaned behind shelves, and ate sandwiches in the sun when the time came to take a break.
By the time we were ready to leave, the place looked brand new and the staffs of both teams had become fast friends. We’ll be back, and you can visit too, with upcoming Art.com Days at MOCHA. They’ll be free to the public, perfect for bringing your kids along for a look. If you can’t make it to our first one on September 30th, consider attending the upcoming My First Art Show. It’s the second intergenerational exhibit, open from September 27th to October 21st, with an Art.com-hosted opening event on the 30th. The exhibition will display art from local amatuer artists ages 2 to 94, with 70% of art sale proceeds going to the artist and the rest to the museum. It’s another worthy cause in the history of MOCHA’s worthy causes, and another that we’re proud to be a part of.