Meet Hannah Tishkoff, an L.A. native who worked as an apprentice in the MOCA teen program during her junior and senior years of high school. Hannah is now a student at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio studying studio art and art history while working at Oberlin’s art museum.
We believe art has the power to change lives and the world but only with the support of individuals like you can we continue to bring to Los Angeles the art, exhibitions, and programs that will make the most meaningful impact in our community.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Hello, my name is Hannah Tishkoff and I was born and raised in Los Angeles. During my junior and senior years of highschool I worked as an apprentice at MOCA. I now go to Oberlin college in Oberlin, Ohio where I study studio art and art history and work at my school's amazing art museum. Recently, I've also gotten really excited about puppets and electronic music.
How did your time in the MOCA Teen Program influence your professional and personal growth?
I definitely consider my time as an apprentice at MOCA to be a turning point in my life. Being there was the first time I saw adults working in an environment that I could see myself in. It also showed me there was a tangible way to combine my interests in social justice and art. The seed for the things I am doing now, giving museum tours at school, curating art shows, were definitely planted while I was at MOCA. After two years at MOCA, I felt very comfortable there and even still when I go back I feel very at home.
Your grandmother Lee Tishkoff is a charter member of MOCA, joining in 1983 shortly after the museum’s founding. Can you tell me how she influenced your love of art?
Whenever I visited my grandma on weekends as a child she would take me to art museums. I think MOCA was my favorite, probably because it was smaller than LACMA and therefore seemed less scary to me as a small child. I remember she would ask me simple questions about the art work like "what do you think is happening here?" and I would surprise her with these really elaborate explanations. She probably didn't know it, but simple questions like those are actually the basis for the Visual Thinking Strategies method of talking about art, which I know is used in the education department at MOCA and which I now use at school in my own tours.
Can you recollect a specific encounter you had with an artist or a work of art that had a profound impact on you?
Working with the artist Marnie Weber while planning for MOCA teen night in 2014 was very profound for me. We got to visit her home and spend time in her personal studio. She was very welcoming to us. She had all us apprentices make 5 foot tall "spirit vessels" of ourselves that were later displayed in the library at MOCA. She was very supportive of everyone's visions, and she really helped to create a collaborative environment for all of us to work in.
Do you have a favorite memory or exhibition you’ve seen at MOCA?
I went to Urs Fischer's clay making event at the Geffen in 2013 - that whole project was stunning. Lumps of clay were everywhere and the whole space was open to the public to use. People made sculptures all over the ground, big and small, some were even built into the railings. There was live piano music and at least 100 people were in there sculpting anything they wanted to. Anyone from elementary school students to my grandma could have their work displayed at Moca! It was such an accessible project and you could tell it really brought people a lot of joy.
What upcoming exhibitions in Los Angeles or at MOCA are you looking forward to in the coming months?
I haven't been back to LA for quite a while now, but the Doug Aitken show sounds really incredible. I love work that is interdisciplinary and multimedia based. That type of work is so important right now.
Do you have any favorite places to eat when you’re downtown visiting MOCA?
I miss getting ramen downtown in Little Tokyo with my friends after work!
Are you going to make any New Year’s resolutions for 2017?
I don't really believe in New Year's resolutions anymore! But I think this year I'm going to try and do nothing for 20 minutes everyday.