The Museum of Bad Art is a quaint yet intriguing gallery. Located just off campus, it is a collection of about 600 pieces of artwork that have accumulated since the museum first opened with their slogan “art too bad to be ignored” in 1994.
Since then, it has set up shop inside of multiple locations in and around Boston through the years. The MOBA’s newest, and now only location, is inside of the Dorchester Brewing Company.
They collaborated with Dorchester Brewing Company in showcasing some key pieces from their collection. This location opened a few months ago and has attracted many people from around the Boston area since. Their main gallery was located in Davis Square in Somerville, but that location along with the Dedham, Brookline and New England Wildlife Center locations have since closed, leaving the gallery in Dorchester to be the only remaining branch.
The Museum of Bad Art is an intentionally funny name intended to attract people toward the quirkiness of the museum, but in all seriousness, the MOBA serves a true and genuine purpose of shining a light on lesser known or completely unknown artists.
The artists whose works are hung in the MOBA would otherwise have nowhere to display their work and passion for art, so thanks to the MOBA, these haunting and hilarious, yet weirdly talented, pieces have a home. Much of the artwork has been thrifted, and there are even opportunities for artists to submit their work to the MOBA on occasion.
As for the art itself, it should not be classified as "bad" per se, at least not skillswise; content wise, however, there are irrefutably some bizarre pieces lining its halls. One specific piece that stands out among the others is a bright, small painting with a simultaneously satirical yet harrowing message titled “Hot, Hot, Hot (Victoria’s Real Secret).” Some staff at Dorchester Brewing Company noted that the unanimous favorite painting among the employees is the piece entitled “Fat Cat.” This piece brings a lighthearted sense of humor and camaraderie to the staff at Dorchester Brewing, allowing, for a brief moment, a frivolous escape from reality to all who pass by this painting, which is located in the stairwell of the brewery.
The MOBA is a great experience to see and appreciate some local art. Not to mention, it is only minutes away from UMass Boston by car or bus. It is also possible to get there by taking the train—although it is a bit of a walk from Andrew Station. Of course, the artwork at the MOBA is notable and worth seeing, but there are many other activities to participate in at Dorchester Brewing Company as well.
Dorchester Brewing Company offers a multitude of board games to their patrons as well as a room behind the bar that contains a few classic arcade games. They also host a bar trivia night every Wednesday starting at 7 p.m. sharp. The only constraint is that participants must be 21 years or older for that specific activity. As for the museum itself, it is free entry and all ages are allowed until 6 p.m. every night. After 6 p.m., valid 21 plus identification is required.
Without a doubt, the MOBA is a fun and unique local gem, and as previously mentioned, it’s easily accessible from UMass Boston. There’s no better time than the present to get out there and see what the MOBA and its host, Dorchester Brewing Company, have to offer.
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