Monday, February 29, 2016

Professional Art Critic

Today, I'll review our field trip to the Walker Art Center yesterday.  Let's start with the company.  Half of the company was pleasant and curious.  The other half was petulant and eye-rolly.  I'll let you guess which person fit each description.  You can use the photos above to help you.

In any case, I forced both companions to view two exhibitions.  First, we saw Ordinary Pictures, which considers the photograph via stock images, advertisements, and other photos for profit.  One piece is a large-scale photograph of a green screen.  I think it could actually function as a green screen - the artist (I didn't get her name) likes to make things that function as the things they depict.  "Why is this art?" asked my skeptical eye-roller.  Another striking installation in this collection is the same photograph - a widely circulated postcard, the placard told me - fancily framed maybe 16 times.  "They're all the same," the tween commented, gesturing unappreciatively at the wall where they hang.

Onto Hippie Modernism, which is what I really wanted to see.  Here, pieces from the mid-1960s are loosely categorized according to Timothy Leary's well-known directive: "Turn on, tune in, and drop out."  There are lots of "Whoa" moments in the exhibition.  Psychedelic films, event posters, funky furniture, large-format photographs, and remarkably, something called the "Knowledge Box," which you stand inside as iconic images from the 1950s and 60s via 20 or so old-school slide carousels flash all around you.  It's really something.

Overall, I'm very glad I forced the children to view this art.  I'm sure they both liked it, deep down inside. 


Anonymous said...

Liked it down deep is what I thought about our family cruise. I know Kevin really liked it and felt that you liked it down deep.......hmm.......a parent can only try! Love, mom

Martha Pettee said...

I really, really want to see hippie modernism. And the photos are priceless!