Monday, July 15, 2013

Sculpture and Painting

The year 1642 meets 2013. In a shopping mall.
This video is funny, exciting, superbly executed and very clever.

Why does it fill me with despair?

Holland's Rijksmuseum staged this elaborate tableau vivant of Rembrandt's "Guards of the Night
in a busy shopping mall. As marketing for the museum, it demands your attention.
If Art doesn't sell, entertainment certainly does.

Is making a spectacle the only way to get an already distracted public to notice art at all?

One of my problems with this approach is the enforced mash-up of spectacle and private life.
I hate being a captive audience. I don't know about life in Holland, but here in the USA,
if I saw people with guns and spears coming towards me while shopping, I'm not shopping anymore.

I'm gone.
Too many real crazies for me to stay around to see if it's really just an advertisement.
Is art supposed to ambush you?

Looking at art depends upon your active engagement with seeing what the artist intended.
Art about the art is a hallway of mirrors, endless commentary but no dialog of you and the art.

After the excitement of this enactment, who is going to be satisfied with spending 30 minutes quietly looking at this or any other static work of art?

What do you think?


Deb said...

Call it fan art for the extroverts. They're the ones seeking stimulation and the latest fashions at the mall.
The introverts are at the museum or in the garden, available to the quiet. Derivations have become the cute plastic replicas of the internet. If I see another R2D2 dress I'm going to join a monastery, I swear!

Theresa Cheek said...

I think this was geared to an audience that might not seek out an art museum on their own. Since I deal with marketing now, I think it is brilliant. It brings in a new audience and helps the viewer see the product in a new light! (albeit, fluorescent)