Free First Thursdays

February

Thursday, February 2, 3 - 9 pm
THROUGHOUT THE MUSEUM

Enjoy an evening of discovery and community during this extra special Free First Thursdays: Spades Night! Players of all levels are welcome to learn more about the history of spades as a staple of Black culture and how the inspiration for the evening came from a century-old playing card in the Museum’s archives. Try your hand at a game of spades and join local creative and Gardner Museum Salon Luminary James Adius Pierre with collaborators Marvin L. Venay and Wynndell Bishop.

The dress code is black and all are invited to come dressed to impress in their best outfits. Explore art, architecture, and seasonal horticulture displays in the Palace. The Café is open late for dinner and drinks. Museum admission is free from 3 pm through 9 pm and interactive programs kick off at 5 pm.

Try your hand at a game of spades and join local creative and Gardner Museum Salon Luminary James Adius Pierre with collaborators Marvin L. Venay and Wynndell Bishop to learn more about the history of spades as a staple of Black culture and how inspiration for the evening came from a century-old playing card in the Museum’s archives.

Explore art, architecture, and seasonal horticulture displays in the Palace. The Café is open late for dinner and drinks.

  • The History of the Game | 5 - 8 pm

    Living Room

    Learn the rules of engagement, playing terminology, and the history of the game of spades as a staple of Black culture.

  • Are you a Deuce or an Ace? | 5 - 8 pm

    Bertucci Education Studio

    Join a game and try your hand at a beginner or mid-level table. Rules, cards, and guidance will be provided. No prior experience is necessary at the deuce level.

  • Film Screening and Talkback | 5:30 pm

    Calderwood Hall

    Catch a screening of a short film that details the origins of Spades Night and the card from the Museum’s archives that started it all. Stay afterward for a talkback with collaborators and creatives James Adius Pierre, Marvin L. Venay, and Wyndell Bishop, as they share about the making of the night. Together, speakers will reflect on the importance of passing down knowledge through generations and gathering and creating spaces to connect around culture.

  • Spades Tournament | 7 - 8:30 pm

    Calderwood Hall

    The tournament begins! Sign-up is for serious players only. This tournament will be overseen by the evening’s co-hosts.

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Photo of a person in a museum.

James Adius Pierre is a passionate advocate for access to the arts for his hometown of Cambridge and the Greater Boston Area. His passion in advocating for the arts led him to found the Adius Arts Initiative, a platform with programs and events designed to intentionally highlight Black arts culture.

 

 

James is an avid lover of the arts and started drawing at a young age. He considers himself an arts advocate and has greatly contributed to the arts culture in Boston working with organizations like The Museum of the National Center of Afro-American Artists, The Museum of Fine Art Boston, The Community Art Center, The Cambridge Arts Council Hibernian Hall, The Central Square Theater, and The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. James is dedicated to sharing his passion and resources to spread the joy of art.

TICKET INFORMATION

Advance registration is required for free timed entry tickets. Seating for portions of the program held in
Calderwood Hall is first come, first served.

HOW TO BUY

  • Click on the GET TICKETS button
  • Call the Box Office at 617 278 5156, Wednesday-Monday, 10 am-4 pm*

COVID-19 POLICY
Face masks, worn over the mouth and nose, are required for free and ticketed events in Calderwood Hall. In line with state and local guidance, we advise anyone who is unvaccinated, and encourage anyone who feels more comfortable, to wear a mask as they explore other areas of the museum.

ACCESSIBILITY
To request accessible or companion seating, or to inquire about other accommodations, please call the Box Office at 617 278 5156 in advance of the program.

Free days are supported in part by the Wallace Minot Leonard Foundation and the Liberty Mutual Foundation.

Education and community programs receive support from the Vertex Foundation, Rowland Foundation, the Yawkey Foundation, The Beker Foundation, Liberty Mutual Foundation, The Hamilton Company Charitable Foundation, Thomas Anthony Pappas Charitable Foundation, and Janet Burke Mann Foundation.

Studio activities are generously sponsored by the Polly Thayer Starr Charitable Trust.

The Neighborhood Salon is supported in part by the Barr Foundation ArtsAmplified Initiative and the Polly Thayer Starr Charitable Trust.

The Museum also receives operating support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, which is supported by the state of Massachusetts and the National Endowment for the Arts.