Five Tables

First Thursdays of each month

Five Tables is a monthly event coinciding with First Free Thursdays organized by the BAMPFA staff, and periodically by the Student Committee. Drop by the Florence Helzel Works on Paper Study Center for a curated behind-the-scenes experience.

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  • Rashid Johnson, Untitled Anxious Bruise Drawing, 2021; oil on cotton rag paper, 38 1/4 x 50 in.; restricted gift of Dr. Uday N. Kumar & Dr. Rajni K. Rao.

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Past Events

  • Thursday, June 1, 4 PM

    Five Tables of Journeys

    In East Asia, a perfect format for artistic journeying is the handscroll, with landscapes or narratives unrolling before our eyes. Three wonderful examples are on view in this iteration of Five Tables: Wang Wen’s sixteenth-century The Eighteen Arhats Crossing the Sea; the seventeenth-century Eight Views of the Xiao and Xiang by Kano Yasunobu; and Michael Cherney’s atmospheric, photographic Yuezhou (Procession of Ships) from 2013–14.

    Five Tables will go on hiatus until further notice following this program.

  • Thursday, May 4, 4 PM

    Five Tables of Reading

    When we see people read in works from BAMPFA’s collection, however, the fact of communication—from intimate to public—is very clear: beautiful women reading love letters and romances abound in Japanese woodblock prints by Kikukawa Eizan, Isoda Koryusai, Utagawa Kunisada, and Kitagawa Utamaro; a Civil War carte de visite  shows freed slaves reading and opines “Lerning [sic] is Wealth”; hieroglyphics on tomb walls state their case for immortality in nineteenth-century photographs of Egypt by Antonio Beato; and more.

  • Thursday, April 6, 4 PM

    Five Tables of Time

    Time is a slippery subject: as objective as an atomic clock, as subjective as waiting for water to boil. Come see how artists figured out vastly different ways to mark time in the works on view at this month's Five Tables.

  • Thursday, March 2, 4PM

    Five Tables of Rebirth

    Curated by the BAMPFA Student Committee, this month’s Five Tables offers the opportunity to view Wassily Kandinsky’s abstract compositions from his series Little Worlds, Ando Hiroshige’s Japanese woodblock prints of blooming sakura flowers, Rembrandt’s etchings, and other vibrant works.

    Curated by the BAMPFA Student Committee.

  • Thursday, February 2, 4—7 PM

    Five Tables of Silkscreens

    Silkscreen, long the commercial technique used for textile patterns and T-shirt designs, came to the fore in the 1960s with its wide adoption by Pop artists, anti-war activists, and psychedelic poster makers.

  • Thursday, January 5, 4—7 PM

    Five Tables of London and Los Angeles

    An idiosyncratic visual journey drops in on two of the world’s most iconic urban centers, London and Los Angeles—cities that inhabit physical space in the world and sprawling psychic space in our imaginations.