The Stories You Tell

Forum Gallery

Why do we tell stories?

Stories connect us to one another and help us make sense of our experiences. They can be funny, dramatic, sad, fact- or fiction-based, perplexing, transforming, or confirming. So can works of art. The Stories You Tell creates a space where visitors are invited to respond to artworks by crafting their own stories. Works by Sue Abramson, Romare Bearden, Mary Cassatt, Henry Taylor, and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, among others, are your springboards to creativity! Write and post a six-word story in the gallery, riff on other visitors’ ideas for larger collaborative stories, and respond to artworks using emojis. We’ll highlight your stories as the project unfolds.

The Stories You Tell also serves as a social space that will host salon-style conversations. All of these activities are a wonderful point of departure for reacting to CMOA’s amazing collection, connecting ideas and narratives to works in our Scaife Galleries.

#cmoa6words
Share your stories online! Take a picture of a work here or in our collection galleries, compose your six-word story, and post it on Instagram (@thecmoa) or Twitter (@cmoa).


Exhibition Images

Installation view, “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art, photo: Bryan Conley

Romare Howard Bearden, Pittsburgh Memories, 1984, collage on board, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Ronald R. Davenport and Mr. and Mrs. Milton A. Washington

People observing a large painting in a gallery

Installation view, “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art, photo: Bryan Conley

Installation view, “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art, photo: Bryan Conley

Tina Barney, Musical Chairs, 1990, chromogenic print, Purchase: gift of her family in honor of Aaronel de Roy Gruber

Installation view, “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art, photo: Bryan Conley

A visitor sticks a 6-word story next to an artwork in “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art. photo: Bryan Conley

Installation view, “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art, showing visitor responses to Rana El Nemr, “Metro #10,” 2003, chromogenic color print, William T. Hillman Fund for Photography, photo: Bryan Conley

People gathered around a table in an art gallery

Installation view, “The Stories You Tell” at Carnegie Museum of Art, photo: Bryan Conley