Sunday Evening Art Gallery Blog — Modern Museums

I love Art Museums.

When I used to work in downtown Chicago, I used to walk to the Art Institute during my lunch hour and wander through its halls one room at a time. I could meander for months and never see it all. The building’s step-back-in-time classical architecture is what art museums are all about.

But in my quest to open my mind and soul to other forms of art, imagine my delight in the structure of modern art museums.

 Museum-of-Modern-Art-Milwaukee_780x432Milwaukee Art Museum, Wisconsin

 You can’t help but notice the unique, almost impossible, angles.

National Museum of American Indian, Washington

 National Museum of American Indian, Washington

Like most Modern Art, these buildings challenge your senses.

Boston Museum of Contemporary Art

Boston Museum of Contemporary Art, Massachusetts

Their designs ask you to make sense of sleek lines and sensual curves.

porsche museumPorsche Museum, Stuttgart, Germany

Sparkling glass and sleek stainless house countless creations that reflect a different side of the human mind.

Modern Art Museum, Fort Worth TX

Modern Museum of Art, Fort Worth, Texas

I admit that I don’t always understand a Modernist’s point of view.

 Museum of Contemporary Art, New York

But one does not always have to understand to appreciate. Or to feel.

Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum (Minnesota)Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, Minnesota

And, after all — isn’t that what Art is supposed to do? Make you feel?

NITEROI CONTEMPORARY ART MUSEUMRio de Janeiro, Brazil ...

 The Niterói Contemporary Art Museum, Brazil

Art Thou Curious?

thWhen I think of museums, I think of antiquities. Old, musty books. Relics from the Renaissance. Crystal serving pieces from the Russian Dynasty. I am not a Modernist. Or a Futurist. But I have recently discovered that I am a Fascinationist. And what a delight! Through the magic of one of my favorite bloggers, Hugmamma’s MIND, BODY and SOUL, (http://hugmamma.com), and a newly followed blog, Sandra at Third Person Travel (http://thirdpersontravel.com) , my senses were awakened by images of art and buildings that just blew my mind.

The museum was the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain (http://www.guggenheim-bilbao.es), which, in all closed-mindedness, I’d never heard of. The image that caught my fancy is called “Maman”, by  Louise Bourgeois, who, according to Guggenheim, “created a rich and ever-changing body of work that intersected with some of the leading avant-garde movements of the 20th century.” To an armchair museumist, that doesn’t ring home. Ring a bell. Ring a doorbell. But how cool is this?

Bourgeois-281x197

You don’t have to be a modern art aficionado to be able to appreciate a bronze, marble, and stainless steel sculpture.

Or how about Tall Tree & The Eye by Anish Kapoor?

Kapoor-A-357x500 (1)

 

The Gug says, “This illusionistic work continues the artist’s examination of complex mathematical and structural principles embodied in sculptural form. The mirrored surfaces of the orbs reflect and refract one another, simultaneously creating and dissolving form and space.”

That’s a lot of four-dimensional words for a wonderful stainless steel and carbon steel sculpture of shiny balls.

I am an over-the-top advocate of teaching old dogs new tricks. You don’t always have to understand something to appreciate it. To enjoy it. To experience it. I never had sushi till I was 50. Who would have thought? Who would have thought that squeamish me would look forward to watching The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones — bloody, flashy TV shows?

Sometimes your introduction to something new is through your kids. I know my TV voyeurism came from my college son. I just tried quinoa for the first time two weeks ago. That was recommended by my best friend. There are as many types and tastes in food, art, books, and movies as there are fish in the sea. Almost. Why not open your mind to some of them?

I have to admit I would not have wandered to the Guggenheim Museum in Spain had I not spotted that unusual sculpture on another blog. Through other blogs I have seen the most amazing pictures, poetry, and points-of-view. Opportunities I never had when I was younger because we didn’t have the Internet when I was younger. We could be voyeurs by reading books and magazines and taking classes.

But now…

Now the world is open to all of us. We don’t have to age mentally, artistically, or metaphysically. Give something new a chance. You don’t have to live with giant metal spiders in your back yard, but appreciating the creativity that went into something like that takes little effort at all.

I have to admit I don’t get modern paintings that are all one color with a different color circle in the corner, or a plate with a piece of kale and a silver dollar-sized scallop and one drizzle of green that’s called dinner. But then again, not everyone finds fantasy fiction interesting (which is what I write).  There is something out there for everyone. Something new. Every day.

I encourage you to check out the Guggenheim (there is one in Spain, Venice, Abu Dhabi, and New York). Since this blog is about art, why not check out a local art fair?  They’re at  local colleges and in the park and even in the mall. Look at the world through someone else’s eyes.  And, of course, a day trip to a museum would be frosting on the carrot cake of life. Squeeze one into your summer.

It will add years to your soul life. And couldn’t we all use a few more?