MFAH Family Day: "Seehearsmelltouchtaste: The Five Senses in Art"


Families will explore works of art from around the world that engage the five senses — sight, hearing, smell, touch and taste. Guests can create their own small flower bouquet inspired by an 18th century Dutch painting and the fragrant flower arrangements in the studio spaces.

Join Houston Playback Theatre as they use feelings and stories shared by audience members to improvise word and music performances. During a gallery experience, an MFAH educator will help families explore works of art using a variety of hands-on materials. “Jump” into a painting and write a postcard to a friend, telling them all of the things that are seen, heard and smelled in that place. Watch films for families, including the award-winning Ratatouille, sketch in the galleries and listen to a storybook.


SMELL and SEE: Flowers Abloom
1-4 p.m. - Lower Level, Southwestern Bell Studio and Farish Classroom
Smell and see fragrant flower arrangements walking into the art-making studio spaces. Use the arrangements and an 18th century Dutch painting as inspiration to create a small flower bouquet. MFAH Teaching Artists are on hand to help get started with materials in both Southwestern Bell Studio and Farish Classroom.

SEE: Sketching the Details
1-4 p.m. - Gallery 218
Capture the delicate lace on a cap, the tall sails of a ship, or the decorative patterns on a jacket as you sketch the people and places depicted in the European galleries. Pick up pencils, a clipboard, and a stool from the MFAH Teaching Artist at this informal program.

TOUCH and SEE: Using the Senses: A Family Gallery Experience
1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. - Meets in Beck Lobby 
Put on walking shoes and go on an art-tastic journey. Make connections to the art with a variety of hands-on materials during this 30-minute gallery experience, led by an MFAH educator.

HEAR and SEE: Listen to “Sense”-sational Stories
1:30 and 3 p.m. - Gallery 215
Relax on pillows and listen to two picture books being read by an MFAH educator. My Five Senses tells the story of a little boy using his five senses to learn about the world around him. Seven Blind Mice, a Caldecott Honor Book, tells the story of seven little mice that have a mystery to solve, just using their sense of touch. Then, have fun exploring a painting that shows five children, each depicting one of the senses.

SEE: Tell a Story: A Postcard Gallery Activity
1-4 p.m. Gallery 218
Imagine "jumping” into one of the paintings in this gallery. Write a postcard about the experience to a friend, telling them all of the things that are seen, heard and smelled in that place. Find paintings with cattle resting on a riverbank, a moonlit night, ships sailing on the water and more.

HEAR and SEE: Performance by Houston Playback Theatre
2 p.m. - Gallery 214
Become a part of this interactive experience from the incredible Houston Playback Theatre. Actors, a musician,and a conductor improvise performances based on feelings and stories shared by audience members.

TASTE: Lemonade Stand
1:00 – 4:00 p.m. - Beck Lobby
Take a break to enjoy the taste of sweet lemonade and refreshing water.

HEAR and SEE: Storybook Films: I Stink!, Noisy Nora, and Stone Soup
1:30 p.m. - Lower Level, Brown Auditorium Theatre
Storybook Films are designed for families with kids ages 2 and up. Each installment brings an animated versions of the most celebrated children’s picture books. The three selections at this family day involve the senses.

HEAR and SEE: Reel Kids Film: Ratatouille
2:30 p.m. - Lower Level, Brown Auditorium Theatre
Reel Kids films bring your family unique viewing experiences — children’s film festival selections, classic cinema, and more.



Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
1001 Bissonnet St.
Houston, TX 77005


is $7 for adults; $3.50 for children and seniors
All events are subject to change due to weather or other concerns. Please check with the venue or organization to ensure an event is taking place as scheduled.