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Me & Modern Art

June 28, 2011 — Leave a comment

I recently had an opportunity to spend a couple of days in DC and visit the National Portrait Gallery and the Smithsonian American Art museums. As a designer I have a hateful relationship with modern art. I believe a lot of it horrendous and benefits from inflammatory press releases, gallery/museum curators looking to make a name for themselves and slow news cycles.

i don’t need three paragraphs to tell what i should see in a piece of art. it should be able to stand on it’s own, make me pause and think. maybe it’s an underlying societal problem, everything has to be given to us, we can no longer think for ourselves and art as a reflection of society is heading down that path.

Hockney preamble

Hockey intro at American Art Museum

Someone pointed out to me that I should say I dislike museums/galleries as opposed to modern art itself because they choose what is presented. But conversely if all they have to present is crap then what are they supposed to do?

But based on my experience I think a lot of what passes for modern art is lazy. There’s a lot of slap this together and get it out the door and make it controversial, make attract attention and we’ll be rich/famous in our lifetime. While at the museum, I came across a sign. Now aside from the video installations none of the other pieces in the museum had this kind of preamble associated with it and unsurprisingly it was by far the worst piece in the place.

I’ve had an opportunity to experience both the Tate Britain and the Tate Modern. The former left me with a feeling of awe and inspiration, while I departed the latter before I was removed for running commentary. It’s been almost a decade since I’ve been to either and while I can’t tell you about any of the trite shit that Tate should have just kept in storage, I do remember coming around the corner to see Joseph Wright’s The Blacksmith. I’d post a photo but you can’t get the feeling of warmth that almost emanates off the original painting. That painting didn’t a press release or explanation, it stops you and draws you in.

As the old adage goes, I may not know art, but I know what I like. I’ve included a gallery of stuff that I saw and liked at the American Art Museum.

art is subjective

April 18, 2008 — Leave a comment

i despise modern art. i think most of it is onanistic garbage foisted upon the public by failed artist and bitter art major in the form of curators. i believe that art should communicate and enhance a shared experience, anything that requires detailed notes, a press release to explain the artist’s vision or has the word ‘installation’ is problematic. . i’ve been to the tate and the tate modern in london and i believe that the tate modern was a cruel joke that went something like this:

“good grief, we’ve got all this tripe we’re too ashamed to show with the real art. plus it’s costing us an arm and a leg to store it.”

“i know, let’s create a new modern space, put all that crap in there and charge people to want to put their eyes out.”

i started this entry yesterday before the furor about the insemination/abortion art project started up and now that it’s come out to be an elaborate hoax and the press release itself was the project, i have even less respect for project or the ‘artist.’ in fact this ‘event’ sums up why i loathe modern art. i don’t need to be told how i should feel about art, i shouldn’t need to have it explained to me. i suppose i shouldn’t make such a blanket statement, i love photography. i could spend hours at a photo exhibit, looking at light and texture and photography is a modern artform and like any other artform has it’s own pretensions but it doesn’t require a pre-determined set of responses.

think about all the great art you’ve seen – how much of it required some detailed explanation? or did you just see it and appreciate it.