Bringing the artist, Museum and community together

How does developing artwork in community settings change us? This is the central question of our Artist Residency, which brings an artist, the Museum and our community together to create a new immersive installation or studio space that will remain on view at The New Children’s Museum. One artist is commissioned for the residency each year. By engaging with families at seven community centers in San Diego through our Mass Creativity program, the artist is inspired to add to his or her initial concept as part of the process of creating a new art installation. The overall goals of the residency are to create experiences that meet the needs of current as well as underserved visitors, to listen to community partners and devise new ways to reach all San Diego families, and to share our unique model with artists and the museum field. The Wonder Sound by Wes Sam-Bruce (2016) was the first Museum installation to be created using this residency model. Learn more about our current and past artist-in-residences below.

Current Artist-in-residence

Tanya Aguiñiga, 2019
Tot Studio

Tanya Aguiñiga is a Los Angeles-based artist, designer and craftsperson who was raised in Tijuana, Mexico. She holds an MFA in furniture design from Rhode Island School of Design and a BA from San Diego State University. Tanya was first commissioned for The New Children’s Museum’s grand opening in 2008 to create Texture Forest, a whimsical toddler playspace. More than a decade later, she is back to collaborate on engaging workshops for the Museum’s 2019 Mass Creativity program that will focus on the theme of emotions and creating imaginary creatures. These workshops will ultimately inform reimagining a new Tot Studio space to be completed in the fall of this year.

past artist-in-residences

Rizzhel Javier, 2018
People and Places

Rizzhel Javier is a San Diego based artist and educator. She graduated college with a Master of Fine Arts in Studio Arts from San Diego State University in 2012. Storytelling is at the core of Rizzhel Javier’s People and Places project. Workshop participants drew self-portraits and shared stories on recorders. These were then made into dolls which the participants could give to “someone they missed.” The final installation in The Community Gallery included opportunities for visitors to record their own stories as well as a playspace with replicas of dozens of the dolls that were created at workshops.

Wes Sam-Bruce, 2016
The Wonder Sound

Wes Sam-Bruce is an artist, educator, illustrator, photographer and poet with deep roots in San Diego. He was also the first artist-in-residence at the Museum. After two years of working with community partners, Wes installed a three-story fort-like structure with drawings of animals, secret rooms and a coded alphabet. He wove stories of community members he had met into the very walls of the structure, creating a space intended to forge new connections among the thousands of people who have visited the space since.

Community Partners

Funding for our Artist Residency program includes

Wobbleland Relocation

Wobbleland has relocated to our Main Level and will reopen this Friday!