Tour of the Harn Museum Sherridon Dressel

Medium of the Art/ Technique of the Artist

When navigating my way through the museum, the first thing to capture my attention was the “Shiva with His Consort Uma” in the Asian collection. There were several pieces that were very appealing in this section, but this particular piece was so intriguing because of its intricate design and "embracive structure." Although this piece presents a complex design, it’s meaning/representation behind “the humanness of a loving embrace” is elegantly stated and ultimately illustrated through its intricate design and construction. Due to the statues inclusion of , the “Shiva and Uma” piece made me feel connected to the cultural aspects behind the meaning of this work, what it symbolized, and the purpose it fulfilled. Through my “in person observations” I was able to examine this work of art and the great amount of detail that contributed to its meaning. Along with physical appearances of the piece, I was able to leave with a better understanding and appreciation for the work itself.

Design of the Museum

The Asian Water Garden was hands down the most appealing section at the Harn Museum. It’s simplicity and tranquil structure accentuated its natural beauty and made the simplicity of nature more admirable. This exhibit was so simple, yet complex which made its appearance and purpose contradicting to the raw art of nature itself. The layout of the garden was almost perfectly constructed as each rock and plant was carefully placed, making the atmosphere feel as if you were walking through an Asian garden. This particular section was built so that people could admire the work of nature and other art forms that can't be created on a canvas or with the use of any tools. The garden also serves to encapsulate the beauty of art in nature, what it means to be truly immersed in the works of the garden, and the feeling of pure bliss when surrounded by nature.

Art and Core Values

Being that family is one the most important things to me, and something I value most in life, this "family" statue really spoke to me. The design of this piece revolves around a mother and fathers embrace around their child's body which, in my opinion, captured the raw emotion of the love and support a family provides. The more I studied this piece, the more I thought about my family and the love/ strong relationship I have with them. This particular art work made me feel incredibly happy and content with the little things in life. Family brings the greatest love and happiness to a person that lasts for a lifetime. My family (parents and siblings) have always supported me and embraced me for who I am. I'd like to think that the mother and father in this art work have the same passion and love for their child, that they would do anything for them and continue to love them no matter what. Family is everything to me. Having such a close and incredibly loving family throughout my life has personally enhanced my interpretation of what it means to have a good life and the importance of close relationships that a family provides.

Art and the Good Life

Ganesh is an infamous symbolism of divinity in Hinduism and is known for solving problems and bestowing blessings on the people of India. One component of the Good Life is to answer the questions that trouble you in life, and to be a blessing to other people. It is more blessed to give than to receive. Ganesh is most often sculpted with a mouse at his feet as a symbol of him being able to chew through any situation. He demonstrated both of these qualities by having divine wisdom, and blessing others. He is known to be a friendly and accessible god. Most people who say they have achieved a good life have a lot of friends and it is important in friendship to be easy and accessible. You do not have to agree with Hindu beliefs to understand that Ganesh demonstrated many qualities that are key factors in having a good life.

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Sherridon Dressel

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