Tour of the Harn By Matthew Adcock

Technique - The means to an end

"City Blocks" by Bertram Hartman

"City Blocks" c. 1929 by Bertram Hartman

This 1929 painting by Bertram Hartman depicts an archetypal metropolitan American city block, complete with towering skyscrapers and dozens of cars. Despite the work's seemingly simple style and low level of detail, it uses a unique aerial perspective and contrasting lighting effects to capture the busy, progressive nature of the roaring '20s in a way that a realistic painting could only dream of. This technique of idealism-over-realism spoke to me as a patriotic American, calling back on the sense of wonder that I experienced when visiting my first big city and reminding me of America's historical determination to never stop improving.

Museum Design - The general Effect

Stoneware and Ceramics Room - Harn Museum

The Stoneware and Ceramics Room

I'm sure this is a common choice for the "Museum Design" category, but this room is simply impossible to overlook. It lures you in with its enormous, unenclosed stoneware pieces, such as "A Heave to Unfold" and "Pli Selon Pli", which leave the viewer curious as to what they are, engaging the imagination in a unique way. Then on your way out, the room captures your interest once again with its highly organized cases of minute ceramics, which contrast in every possible way with the massive, unconstrained stoneware pieces. Overall, this wing of the Harn is easily the most visually fascinating due to its . As a viewer, you come for the eye-catching foreign stoneware and stay for the detailed variety found in the ceramics collection.

Core Values - What it means to me

"Excavation" by Boardman Robinson

"Excavation" c. 1926 by Boardman Robinson

"Excavation" depicts a group of working class American laborers engaging in the construction of an early American metropolis. When deciding on a core values work, I was torn between this one and a Cuban painting depicting a sole miner because both paintings depicted success through hard work and determination. I ultimately picked this one because of its bright, optimistic lighting and its inclusion of multiple workers cooperating as a team. What speaks to me most is that each worker is specializing in a single task, signifying the importance of each of them as an individual. Thus, this work captures my two most important values, individualism and determination, in a romantic American setting.

The Good Life - Putting it All Together

"Northeast Gorge at Appledore" by Childe Hassam

"Northeast Gorge at Appledore" c. 1912 by Childe Hassam

Created in 1912 by Childe Hassam, this piece depicts a man climbing out of a dark, wet gorge up toward a majestic green cliff. Though the piece was originally created simply to capture the beauty of nature, I see it as a representation of the ideal life. The painting's inclusion of a man climbing solo out of a creek signifies humble beginnings and a wish to improve one's initial state. The sunny green cliffs above represent a better lifestyle, serving as a goal that gives the climber's journey meaning. Whether the climber makes it to the top or not is irrelevant, as life is never about the destination but rather the journey taken to get there. To me, "Northeast Gorge" depicts a self-fulfilling life of meaning and progress that never stops getting better.

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