“What’s in your Pockets?”


Wednesday, July 17, 2013


Downtown Santa Cruz on Pacific Avenue

How many people exhibited objects?


How many people came but did not bring objects?



Santa Cruz MAH

Posted by Pop Up Museum Intern Lauren Benetua

What was it about?

Our Pop Up Pocket Museum welcomed visitors and exhibitors to share with us their everyday lives. Asking, “What do you carry in your pockets?”, and “What items do have with you on a normal basis?” allowed all passersby to be a part of our exhibition. Not everything that belongs in a museum collection has to be a profound masterpiece; often our personal items can be more telling of a community than works of art. Our goal was to highlight that the simple treasures found in our pockets speak volumes about the mundane adventures that is our everyday life!

How did it go?

Being our first pop up museum held in downtown Santa Cruz, this pop up was very experimental. Because of the high-trafficked strip, bustling with every character and sub-culture of Santa Cruz, we kept it to a low profile and worked without any collaborators. We attracted visitors and exhibitors from new-to-the-area families enthralled to have run into such a welcoming atmosphere, to familiar-faced poppers who came to share without us having to introduce the concept of Pop Ups. The overall energy of our Pop Up Museum held downtown was friendly, curious and enthusiastic. We laughed at pocket stories that were attached to one wild goose chase to find a woman's purse across the state, one invite to a weekly event that covers a fun, brave and racy topic (shout out to turnonsc.us), and more. We were serenaded by a cordial homeless man, and enjoyed poetry recitals of works by the great Edgar Allan Poe. In all, we attracted a varied though small audience. We know that a more promoted event with the help of collaborators would increase our numbers, but perhaps our biggest point of consideration with this Pop Up is the fact that 'Pockets' are normally not shared with others. Surprisingly or unsurprisingly, people are pragmatic about what we carry these days: phone, wallet, keys. The majority of our visitors hesitated to put these on display, and we can't say we could blame them. However, those who refrained from exhibiting the more valuable pocket items certainly enjoyed the stories and displays we had to share.