www.montereycountyweekly.com April 4-10, 2024 MONTEREY COUNTY WEEKLY 37 CULTURE The 2023 Monterey Museum of Art’s Block Party was a blast and brought a truly unique vibe to the usually calm downtown. And it is all happening again at the tail end of the MMA’s winter season, with some teasers toward the upcoming spring season. One can also step out of the building and meet MMA Artist in Residence Jane Kim, who will be presenting an outside installation built together with local students. Kim’s cooperation with the museum started with a solo show titled Migrations, very much relevant to this year’s themes chosen by MMA: agriculture and cultural heritage and how people influence the landscape. “The museum wanted to activate the ground floor as an educational space,” Kim says. Based in San Francisco, Kim specializes in fine arts, murals and scientific illustration. The ground floor expands to the neighborhood with the Block Party. “Last year’s format was wonderful,” says Roxanne O’Weger, MMA’s director of education and public programs since 2022. “It attracted 3,000 people. So we decided to expand the experience. There will be no passive moment.” O’Weger, who says she never got to go to the museum as a child, is in charge of MMA’s school tours program; the museum not only welcomes Monterey County students for free. Students, gathered by the Arts Council for Monterey County, get access to a free mentoring program. The Block Party was the answer to the question: What can the museum do to broaden its reach in the community? Hence, MMA’s various free programs and art experiences and bigger events, such as the Block Party and evening dance party. “We’ve received a lot of feedback,” O’Weger says. “We will have more restrooms, filtered water, a bigger dance floor, food, light mapping and vendors.” Music will be selected and played by DJ Hanif Wondir, who already put a stamp of quality on the inaugural party. He is a master of mixing across genres, keeping them all in rotation, while the dance floor is moving. This DJ is also a muralist and digital artist, so his connection to the art museum makes sense. Monterey Museum of Art’s Block Party is 11am-4pm, and the dance party (for ages 21+) is 7-10pm on Saturday, April 6. Monterey Museum of Art, 559 Pacific St., Monterey. Free/block party; $25/dance party; $125/VIP experience. 372-5477, montereyart.org. RANDY TUNNELL PHOTOGRAPHY Arty Party A hit last year, Monterey Museum of Art’s Block Party promises to be even bigger this time around. By Agata Pop˛eda Guests at MMA’s 2023 Block Party could spend the day roaming exhibits and art activities, go home for a meal, then return for dancing. The format repeats this year.