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We've got a new gal here on The Salt Project!

Meet Camille: Mama, Adventurer and latest contributor to The Salt Project Team. She's here to tell you all about UMOCA.

Family Art Saturday at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art!

Kids and adults alike will love the free family art activities offered every second Saturday of the month at the Utah Museum of Contemporary Art (UMOCA) in downtown Salt Lake City.

My family and I have visited the UMOCA throughout the years to examine the terrific contemporary art exhibits that are constantly changing, but this was our first experience with the free family art activity.

Upon entering the UMOCA to embark on our art outing, a friendly receptionist directed my family and me to the UMOCA Studio at the back of the building, where the workshop was taking place.  Disclaimer: we arrived at little after 3 pm (the activity runs from 2:00-4:00 pm each second Saturday; also, punctuality is compromised when hustling three little kids out the door), but we had no problem easing ourselves into the activity.

For this particular Saturday event, the theme was "Lay of the Land" (based on one of the current art exhibitions). To introduce the activity, a friendly UMOCA art helper posed questions to my kids about what our landscape looked like before people came and built roads, buildings, and other things.  Each child was given a print-out of a photograph of a picturesque and pristine mountain landscape, along with vinyl stickers shaped like buildings and such that the kids could stick onto their landscapes.  The kids were also encouraged to use paper, colored pencils, markers, and glue to further transform the photograph into a creative collage. Since we were a bit tardy to the activity, my kids had fewer supplies to work with, but they had sufficient to achieve the goals of the activity.  One family arrived later than we did and really couldn't do much of anything, since the supplies had really been depleted by then.  Word to the wise: arrive on time to this activity.

My kids love art projects like this, so they went to town adhering stickers; drawing; and  cutting and gluing collaged shapes to their photographs.  When the activity closed at 4 pm, neither of my kids wanted to leave.  They hadn't completed their collages and wanted to stay for much longer to do so (another reason for arriving earlier). 
I have kids ages 5, 3, and 16 months, and this activity was definitely geared towards the minimum preschool age and up variety of kids. 

My 3- and 5-year-olds loved making art, while my 16-month-old liked throwing colored pencils after coloring for a brief 2 minutes.  However, kids of all ages enjoyed this activity.  The UMOCA Studio  wasn't crowded and offered plenty of space to spread out and make art.

An added bonus to the activity was enjoying the art exhibits with my family after the workshop ended.  My husband and I always make a point of reminding our kids not to touch the art.  The main gallery offered a really great conceptual collection of art entitled "Grandma's Cupboard" by Kate Ericson and Mel Ziegler.  My kids were interested in lots of the pieces, including some made with balloons, rocks, and sticks.  All kid-friendly stuff.  From past experience, not all exhibits are entirely family-friendly, but this exhibit is great!

In the end, we really enjoyed this visit to the UMOCA.  I look forward to the next Family Art Saturday on December 12 from 2:00-4:00 pm.

Closed Sun & Mon
Tue – Thu: 11 am – 6 pm
Fri: 11am – 9 pm
Sat: 11 am – 6 pm
Entrance Fee(s)
Entrance Fee: Free, although there is a suggested $5 donation
Helpful Tips


  • Metered parking is readily available on West Temple and on 100 South between West Temple and Main Street.
  • Paid parking is available at the Marriott Hotel across the street on West Temple and at City Creek (we parked at City Creek - the first hour is free, and the second hour is free if you pay at one of the "Easy Pay" kiosks).
  • Paid parking is available at the Plaza Hotel across the street on South Temple near the TRAX station.
  • The UMOCA is super accessible from TRAX.  It's half a block from the station on West Temple.

Helpful Tips:
The UMOCA is ADA accessible and open to all ages.


Hollie Tue, 12/08/2015 - 17:09

Great article!! Thanks for the great idea for a day with the kids. Sometimes as a mom the worst Thing is thinking of things to do.

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