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May 3, 2022

MoPOP’s May 2022 Update:
Sound Lab has Reopened and the Annual Science-Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival is Here; Plus a Sensory-Friendly Evening, Homeschool Days, and more.

Explore four decades of photography in MoPOP’s latest exhibition “Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop”

SEATTLE, WA (May 3, 2022)The Museum of Pop Culture is a leading-edge, nonprofit museum in Seattle, dedicated to the ideas and risk-taking that fuel contemporary pop culture. Currently on view is the touring exhibition, Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop along with a host of mainstay exhibitions covering science fictionmusicvideo games, and more. See the complete list here. For tickets and information, visit

MoPOP recently announced the reopening of its popular hands-on Sound Lab exhibition and that Ruth E. Carter: Afrofuturism in Costume Design will open June 18, featuring more than 60 works from films such as Black PantherDo the Right ThingSelmaMalcolm X, and more. More information at
The Museum is also participating in GiveBIG today and tomorrow, May 3-4. To learn more about supporting the work and programs produced by the Museum, please visit us here.

Here’s what else is coming up this month at MoPOP - both in-person and virtual:

17th Annual Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival May 21-22

Science Fiction + Fantasy Short Film Festival (SFFSFF) is an annual event hosted by MoPOP and SIFF to celebrate new and innovative additions to the science fiction and fantasy cinematic arts. Now in its 17th year, SFFSFF screens animated and live-action science fiction and fantasy films from around the world, which are then judged by nationally recognized film critics. This wildly popular festival has sold out for the last ten years in a row, packing the house with enthusiastic fans from the region’s sci-fi, fantasy, and film communities. Last year we hosted our first-ever digital showcase, inviting fans from all over the world to view the latest and greatest in genre film. This year we have two in person screenings in addition to a virtual option. Films from SFFSFF have also received international distribution and sparked the interest of a vast network of film fans — even receiving Academy Awards nominations, museum exhibition features, and more.


Sensory-Friendly Evening at MoPOP May 12

Join us for our Sensory-Friendly Programs, an opportunity for adults and families to experience the museum with lowered volume and light levels. Sensory-Friendly Programs are a free opportunity for  anyone who can benefit from a low-sensory museum environment.


MoPOP Matinee Takeover Featuring Community-Driven Screenings From Other Local Nonprofits in Sound + Vision Theater

From March through June, Three Dollar Bill Cinema is in the director’s chair, showcasing the very best of queer horror shorts. MoPOP’s Sound + Vision Theater will play a lineup chosen exclusively by our partner for two screenings each day we’re open.

Take a break from wandering through our exhibitions, see something you’ve never seen before, and learn about what’s going on with our friends in Seattle. Screenings are included in your general admission ticket at no extra cost, making MoPOP Matinee Takeovers an easy and fun addition to your museum experience.


Spark Your Pop Culture Curiosity: MoPOP Launches Online Collection Vault

While several hundred objects from MoPOP’s collection are on display at any one time in the museum, more than 80,000 pieces are under our care. MoPOP’s permanent collection — much of which is stored in a physical “vault” — spans the breadth of the pop culture canon and also features one of the finest assemblages of popular music-related artifacts in existence. We invite you to spark your pop culture curiosity through our online collection vault which features a sampling of objects within our permanent collection, selected by our curators and organized into content areas.


Graphic Novels Student Clubs

MoPOP’s virtual Graphic Novels Club provides a unique opportunity for students to bond with fellow nerds while cultivating a natural love for reading. Each month, we’ll use a graphic novel (or two) to explore social justice topics and issues such as LGBTQ+ and Black stories, climate change, immigrant equity, and more. With separate tracks for readers ages 9–11and ages 12–14, sessions will alternate between discussions about the books and creating art inspired by our favorite cartoonists and graphic novelists.

Meetings take place April-June via Zoom on Tuesdays from 4:00–5:00 p.m. PT. Sign up for any (or all!) of the months you’d like. MAY DATES: May 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31


Summer Camps - ON SALE NOW

Professional teaching artists lead MoPOP experiences where campers create original music videos, explore fantasy worlds, discover the world of drag, or design their own exhibitions. Programs begin in July for students in grades 2–12. more information here >>

Rock ‘n’ Rolling Music Video Camp
July 18–22, 8:45am–4:00pm, ages 10-13

Creating Fantasy Camp
July 25-29, 8:45am–4:00pm, ages 7-10

Making a Museum Camp
August 1-5, 8:45am-4:00pm, ages 10-13

*WAITLIST* Drag-tastic Summer Camp: The Art of Drag
August 8-12, 8:45am–4:00pm, ages 12-18


Homeschool Days - FUNdamentals of Hip-Hop
MAY DATE: May 19
MoPOP offers a unique opportunity for homeschooled students and their families to participate in thematic, hands-on experiences centered on the museum’s exhibits and content.
Each homeschool day features a different student-centered workshop led by a professional teaching artist, a guided gallery experience, and free time to explore our exciting and interactive exhibits. Your family will be encouraged to work together, ask questions, and engage with our museum’s content.


*VIRTUAL* Introduction to Graphic Novels and Comic Drawing

Join comics artist Kane Lynch for a special livestream workshop focused on the “how-to” of graphic novels and comic art! From technical terms to panel structures and from drawing basics to penciling effects, we’ll explore the art of drawing and storytelling. Take this class on its own or apply what you’ve learned to our From Sketches to Scrawls workshop series!

*VIRTUAL* From Sketches to Scrawls: Graphic Novels Workshop Series
MAY DATES: May 20, 27

Have you ever wanted to learn the work behind comics and graphic novels? Join us and professional comic artist Kane Lynch to explore the world of graphic novels and other longer-form comics projects in this special 3-week, Livestream workshop series! We’ll go hands-on and in-depth to learn penciling and character design, inking and background coloring, lettering techniques, story structure, and more. Students will leave this workshop series armed with the tools they’ll need to create their own graphic novels or comics.


Contact High: A Visual History of Hip-Hop October 16, 2021 - March 2023

They say a picture’s worth 1,000 words, and that’s especially true of one of music’s most language-conscious genres: hip-hop. Contact High explores four decades of photography, from the late 1970s to today, documenting a revolution not just in music, but in politics, race relations, fashion, and culture. Through more than 170 iconic images of hip-hop's most influential artists (Missy Elliott, Jay-Z, Queen Latifah, Tupac, and more) — including contact sheets that give us a rare glimpse into the creative process of a photo session — Contact High examines the evolution of hip-hop, connecting us with the experiences, identities, and places that have shaped the world’s most popular music genre.

Exhibition highlights include:
  • Exclusive images of some of hip-hop’s biggest influences, including Missy Elliot, Jay-Z, Queen Latifah, Kanye West, and Tupac Shakur.
  • More than 75 unedited contact sheets ranging from Barron Claiborne’s iconic Notorious B.I.G. portraits to images of Aaliyah, Wu-Tang Clan, Sir Mix-A-Lot, and Kanye West.
  • The Dapper Dan jacket made for Rakim and MF DOOM’s mask.
  • In addition to photographs, artifacts from MoPOP’s permanent collection such as early rap battle fliers, Grandmaster Flash’s turntables, Tupac Shakur manuscripts, Flavor magazines, and costumes from Sha-Rock and The Notorious B.I.G., add to our understanding of hip-hop culture.
  • A documentary short film featuring Contact High photographers at work and in conversation, including Barron Claiborne, Brian “B+” Cross, Eric Coleman, Estevan Oriol, Jorge Peniche, Jamel Shabazz, Janette Beckman, Joe Conzo, Jack McKain, Dana Scruggs, and Danny Clinch. The film is produced by the Annenberg Foundation and Radical Media.

MoPOP is a leading-edge nonprofit museum in Seattle, dedicated to the ideas and risk-taking that fuel contemporary pop culture. With a mission to make creative expression a life-changing force by offering experiences that inspire and connect our communities, MoPOP reaches multigenerational audiences through our collections, exhibitions, educational programs and community partnerships. At MoPOP, artists, audiences, and ideas converge, bringing understanding, interpretation, and scholarship to the pop culture of our time. 

Facebook - /MoPOPSeattle
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Instagram - @MoPOPSeattle 


MoPOP, Marketing Communications