Tuesday, March 23, 2010
ART and ALL THAT
On my recent trip to NY, I spent a lot of time in art museums. What I noticed was a lot of installation art. I think I've said before here, I don't get most installation art.
What is a room full of newspapers pasted on the floor, some painted blue, supposed to tell me. What are a hundred monitors playing the same footage all about? What do orange peels mean? Art may be beautiful, it may tell us a truth about ourselves, it may point out illusions, it may capture a time, point up injustice, it makes you look at something in a new way. I'm sure the last is what most installation art is meant to do. But is everything worth looking at?
Clearly installation art's only for museums large enough to hold it-nobody would ever buy such art. So if you're creating art solely for museums, don't you enter into a pact with curators on some level. It's either get picked up by a museum or you're trash. Literally.
I also noticed many pieces featuring sex and violence. One piece was a naked woman twirling a hula hoop made of barbed wire. In the museum, PS I, the art from the sixties was just about being naked. But by 2010, nakedness didn't cut it so they had to find something that did.
At the MOMA, Marina Abramović's work is given a whole floor. The artist herself sits on the first floor all day long staring at whoever cares to sit across from her. Is this more than a gimmick? It makes a small point, but then what? Other exhibits had naked people two inches apart, people back to back, etc. Such a static use of live bodies.
Do you think one hundred years from now this art will be more than a curiosity?
My husband says that since we have come to respect non-representational art, we will acquire a taste for this, too. Do you think so?
What pieces of art move you most? What's art to you?