Random Observation/Comment #151: Modern art confuses me, but I still go to the exhibits and spend hours walking the intentionally-angled light sources and minor details with hopes that I will somehow become enlightened. I heard somewhere, sometime ago, that modern art is supposed to be about your first reactions and how the specific piece makes you feel as time passes. Unfortunately, in most cases, I feel nothing because what I see doesn’t actually make any sense (at least to me anyway). After staring (at whatever it is) in profound confusion and frustration, I find that I’m silently straining my eyes to see something that isn’t there. Even with my wild imagination, I don’t understand how some random orgasms of paint on a large piece of canvas are remarkable. If it was created by elementary school children, then I would give it a gold star, but this is coming from a person who devotes his/her career to this profession. I think they may be poor, struggling artists for a reason, and they should probably search for a new profession (I can hear the hissing and booing already). Unless – they are actually doing something right (which landed their piece in the Tate Modern) and I have terrible taste in modern art (or terrible taste in general). I need to clarify that I do have much respect for artists because I know many artists from Cooper, but I guess I just expected a “wow,” instead of a “mweh.” Maybe I’m just not deep enough to grasp its purpose. These people (artists and judges alike) must be on drugs – like, a lot of drugs.
The Tate Modern flaunts its large tower and glass roof across the Thames River from St. Paul’s Cathedral. Postcard-esque pictures can be taken along the northern and southern banks of the river with the Millennium Bridge nicely highlighting the attractions. The location, itself, may make it irresistible to pass without entering. The free admission to half of the exhibits personally made it a wise investment of time. For what you pay, it’s hard to be completely disappointed.
Walking into the long hallway, you reach an enormous amount of open space. This room was my favorite, not only because of the large Half-Life creature wreaking havoc across my imagination (shown in the picture above), but also due to its warehouse-type design and simplicity. This room is half of the entire museum, but it gives such a wonderful welcome. In a way, it clears my senses and prepares me for the brain-fcuk to come. Whenever I need to see that open space, I just look out the southern part of the exhibits. Whenever I want the contrast of scenery and beauty, I look out the north side to see St Paul’s Cathedral. The overall planning of this museum’s architecture fascinated me more than the actual artwork inside. I’m going to go out on a limb and say the museum itself is as much of an exhibit as the silverware hanging from the ceiling (go figure).
There were quite a few pieces that made me say, “Damn, that’s cool” or “I would probably hang that in my room.” A particular room on the third floor was my favorite exhibit (with artwork) of the entire museum. I’ve absent-mindedly forgotten the name of the artists, but given that I’m a city-lover, you can probably make the connection if you visit. The entire room is filled with very large pieces, but the one that stands out is the one on the far wall, which only maintains beauty at a distance. The effect fades when you stand closer and analyze the details, but it always catches your attention. My eyes are glued to it, but whenever I try to stare and fall deeper, it flutters and disappears. The artwork forces me to look at other paintings, only to sneak a glance of, what I see as, the essence of every city. Every time I look at this, I feel like I can see the beating heart of a skyscraper community from a satellite’s perspective. The busy life screams to the distances any alien spying on us should reckon. I hope they’re jealous, or better yet, envious so they could adopt our overloading awesome-nometer. We’re so awesome that we invented an awesome-nometer to measure it. We’re so awesome above awesome that the only levels on the awesome-nometer are “anti-lame”, “schweet”, “siiikkkk”, and “Wordlife – New York status.”
I don’t claim to understand modern art, but why would you make something that only a select group of people would be able to appreciate? Hmmm… Objection to what I just wrote, but I won’t use the backspace. I guess I am inventing, or at least aiding inventions, that can be used by select groups in first world countries. The percentage of the world that would do anything for running water and a cheap light-source is much larger than one might consider. Some art is elitist, but so much that we have can be taken as a level of elitist as well. I never thought analyzing modern art would lead me to thinking about engineering and much larger problems.
Anyway, enjoy the museum and make a donation.
~See Lemons Strain to See