Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Slow Looking, Slow Down....Take Your Time

Spend more than a minute looking at one painting; you don't have to get in all of your lifetime's art history requirement in in just one day at the Art Institute, the Met or the Louvre; you can slow down; it's a new movement akin to slow food, slow art.

Read this from the New York Times....

Cameras replaced sketching by the last century; convenience trumped engagement, the viewfinder afforded emotional distance and many people no longer felt the same urgency to look. It became possible to imagine that because a reproduction of an image was safely squirreled away in a camera or cell phone, or because it was eternally available on the Web, dawdling before an original was a waste of time, especially with so much ground to cover.

We could dream about covering lots of ground thanks to expanding collections and faster means of transportation. At the same time, the canon of art that provided guideposts to tell people where to go and what to look at was gradually dismantled. A core of shared values yielded to an equality among visual materials. This was good and necessary, up to a point. Millions of images came to compete for our attention. Liberated by a proliferation, Western culture was also set adrift in an ocean of passing stimulation, with no anchors to secure it.

So tourists now wander through museums, seeking to fulfill their lifetime’s art history requirement in a day, wondering whether it may now be the quantity of material they pass by rather than the quality of concentration they bring to what few things they choose to focus upon that determines whether they have “done” the Louvre. It’s self-improvement on the fly.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Think About Judith Leyster....

[caption id="attachment_772" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Judith Leyster, self-portrait"]Judith Leyster, self-portrait[/caption]

Think about Judith Leyster, a great woman artist 1609-1660. The link is from the New York Times review of an exhibit at the National Gallery of Art.
Think of “Judith Leyster, 1609-1660” at theNational Gallery of Art as a 400-year-old answer to the art historian Linda Nochlin’s famous question “Why have there been no great women artists?”