In These Uncertain Times

Creativity, Community, and Compassion During a Global Pandemic

In these uncertain times, we need space to collectively grieve, celebrate and heal. Here at the MAH, our mission is to ignite shared experiences and unexpected connections. And what better example of shared experience could we have than a global pandemic?

The daily lives of people in our community, and all over the world, have changed dramatically in response to the rapid spread of COVID-19. While shelter in place orders have many people spending more time indoors, others continue to live and work outside the home with caution. Masks, gloves, protective barriers and social distancing have become the new normal. But despite all these barriers people continue to find ways to creatively reconnect with themselves and their communities during this difficult time.

We’re all in this together, but everyone is responding to this crisis differently. From coordinating mutual aid efforts to developing new creative practices at home - we want to hear how you are processing and responding to this moment. How are you connecting with your community? What are you doing, or choosing not to do, with this time? The MAH wants to provide a space for us to come together to share our own lived experiences with this medical and economic crisis.

Opening in October, this exhibition will showcase the creativity and resilience of Santa Cruz County’s response to shelter in place and the COVID-19 global pandemic. Through community-sourced artwork, individual stories and objects from the MAH’s history collection, we will explore the ways that creativity and community can support us through times of uncertainty.

Sign up for our weekly email updates and stay tuned for more information on how to get involved as we co-create this exhibition together, virtually.

Exhibiting Artists

After an open call for participation in the Summer of 2020, we received over 150 submissions from our creative community. From those who applied here is the full list of artists that will be featured in the exhibition.

Anchor Artists

  • Abi Mustapha
  • Ann Hazels
  • Dana Peters
  • Gabriel Medina
  • Myra Eastman
  • Sarah Bianco
  • Shmuel Thaler
  • Tawnya Gilbert

Community-Sourced Artists

  • Angelina Reed
  • Camilla Schaeffer
  • Carol Sandford
  • Christina Salinas
  • Cristina Sayers
  • Daniel Jay
  • Dawn Motyk
  • Erin Single
  • Gretchen Regenhardt & Anastasia Torres-Gil
  • Henry Zhou
  • Isaac Klotz
  • Jamie Keil
  • Jasmin Zafra
  • Jeff Alan West
  • Jennifer Chun
  • Jennifer Wildermuth Reyes
  • Jess Waidhofer
  • Jim Turner
  • John Babcock
  • Joshua Moreno
  • Linda Cover
  • Lisa Ekström
  • Liz Celeste
  • Lynne Todaro
  • M. James Becker
  • Madison McGain
  • Margaret Michel
  • Marilia Kaisar
  • Mary McNamara
  • Megan Gnekow
  • Megan O’Dea
  • Michael Lane
  • Montana Fowler
  • Mycah Miller
  • Noveena Wade
  • Oskar Elek
  • Patrick Stefaniak
  • Rachael Athens
  • Rachel Kippen
  • Robynn Smith
  • Samuel
  • Sara Friedlander & ARRT
  • Sheila Cremonini
  • Shelby Graham
  • Sofia Treadwell
  • Susan Hill
  • Sydney Zentall
  • Vivian Vargas
  • Wendy Meg Siegel

In the News

Virtual Film Screenings

The rapid spread of Covid-19 has significantly impacted the daily lives of people in our community, and all over the world. While shelter in place orders have many people spending more time at home, others must continue to live and work with caution. These artworks reflect on the impact this crisis has had on our lives and on those who work tirelessly on the front lines of this pandemic each day.

This event was held on Friday, February 12, 2021.

This pandemic has laid bare the inequities created by our social systems for centuries. The disproportionate impact of this virus on the health and well being of black and brown communities sheds light on systemic injustice in our country. As we make time to collectively grieve and recover from this virus, we must also work to heal the trauma of systematic racism to create a more equitable world for everyone. The artworks shared as part of this event highlight ways that artists are using their practice to grieve, remember, and process the complicated emotions brought about over the last year.

This event was held on Friday, February 19, 2021.

This global pandemic has opened a portal to a whole range of emotions. As we experience the fear, anxiety, and isolation of this moment, many have turned to art as a way to help process complex emotions. The artworks shared in this program use the visual language of shape, color, and form to embrace the unknown.

This event was hosted on Friday, February 26, 2021.

Covid-19 has impacted us all differently. Masks, gloves, protective barriers, and social distancing have become the new normal. But despite all these barriers, people continue to find ways to creatively reconnect with themselves and their communities throughout this difficult time. From art by mail projects to creative at-home studio interventions, this event highlights artworks that creatively reflect and connect us.

This event was held on Friday, March 5, 2021.

This pandemic has forced many of us to slow down and take stock of our lives. And in the months since March of 2020, it has continued to be a moment of collective pause and deep reflection. For some it has provided time to experiment with their creativity, while some have used this space to dig deep into their artistic practice. From weaving and handmade paper to rehabilitated cuckoo clocks, these artworks span a whole range of creative practices.

This event was held on Friday, March 12, 2021.

A night of short films featured in the exhibition highlighting the creativity and compassion of Santa Cruz County during this global pandemic. Films featured this week will be from artists exhibiting at the MAH as part of In These Uncertain Times and at the Sesnon Underground as part of At the Present Moment.

This event was held on Friday, March 19, 2021.

Downtown Displays

Created in partnership with the Downtown Association of Santa Cruz these pop-up displays highlight Santa Cruz County's creativity and compassion during a global pandemic. Swing by to visit the two neighboring locations at 119 & 121 Walnut Ave, Downtown Santa Cruz. View on Maps.

Artist Residency


Amidst the precarity of this moment, the MAH took some time to pause and reflect on the ways we use our spaces. From our gardens to our galleries, we want to explore how we can best make use of these spaces while our doors remain closed to the public.

As we transition into the fall and plan for our reopening, we want to embrace the latency of this unique time. To explore the unstructured capacity of this transitional moment, and create new opportunities to support and sustain creativity within our community.

Still Processing is a two-month artist residency that invites local artist Abi Mustapha to use the MAH’s Solari Gallery as an open workspace and studio to imagine new large-scale illustrations. The work created during this residency will be included in the upcoming exhibition In These Uncertain Times.

Student Call Out

At the Present Moment led by UC Santa Cruz, Sesnon Underground Gallery.

Large Underground Img

At the Present Moment, an online exhibition collaboration with the Sesnon Underground Gallery is comprised of pieces made by student artists and creators at UC Santa Cruz during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Each student has brought their unique perspective to this collective moment and their work is a testament to the enduring creativity of our campus community.

The deadline for students to submit work is February 2, 2021. Learn More on Their Website >>

More MAH

Learn more about our exhibition philosophy and mission as we get ready to co-create this exhibition together.

Mon, Aug 3, 2020

In these Uncertain Times FAQs

We’ve received over 120 responses to the community survey last week, read the FAQ on how to get involved in the MAH's upcoming exhibition 'In These Uncertain Times.'

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