Harn Museum of Art By William Rodriguez


Although most of the art that I witnessed at the Harn Museum meant next to nothing to me personally, a couple of pieces stood out. These pieces either related back to a moment in my own life, conveyed a subtle message, or simply made me laugh. Main picture from: https://www.uff.ufl.edu/Facilities/Facilities.asp?id=108

Medium / Style Of Art

This sculpture that I stumbled upon is really just a lamp as one can see in the picture, but in person this artifact has quite a number of intricacies. The lamp is obviously a plant (a pond lily to be more exact), with each of the eighteen flowers being a light. Each flower is hand crafted and has different levels of waviness, length, and shade making it hold a simple yet robust touch of realism. The sculpture also has an abundance of other plants surrounding the base, whose stems wind up in coils, depicting some kind of connection between the natural inspiration of the artwork and its electrical functionality. Maybe the artist Louise Comfort Tiffany thought that nature and man-made artifacts could be brought together even in the form of a simple lamp. The fact that this artwork retains meaning and purpose not only withstanding but embracing its medium as a quaint and functional lamp is unquestionably brilliant. This shows us that even concepts as abstract as art itself can benefit from thinking outside the box and reaching into the realms of functionality for not just heightened decor, but meaning.

Design Of The Museum

Upon visiting my first section of the library I was immediately surprised to see a bundle of trash located left-center stage, in its very own spotlight. Why would the museum place something like a ball of trash towards the very front of the museum so it's one of the first things the audience sees? Maybe the museum is self aware that art is weird and sometimes even silly. Maybe the people in charge of running the museum see something greater in this ball of trash than I possibly can. Or, more likely, the people who apparently donated this trash ball paid for it to be placed front and center as a joke. Regardless, its placement did capture my interest for its goofiness and utter lack of apparent meaning. Whether this was done on purpose or on accident, I cannot glean adequate information to understand, but it works.

Art And Core Values

This next artwork is difficult to explain, as all art is, but it felt oddly fitting and natural. It's called Black Flame and was created by Tanaka Tomomi in 1983. Each petal of this flame is tightly wound with metal sheets, forming an unbelievably intricate design towards the tips of the sculpture. When I started doing art, I tried to make my art as detailed as possible so that people would look over the fact that the actual art wasn't very good. Resultantly, this artwork reminds me of my own determination to start something I wasn't good at. Through simple repetition and adding in more and more detail until I couldn't physically fit any more onto a single page, my artwork progressed; just like how the flames become more and more intricate as they reach up into the air. I doubt this is the actual meaning of the art -- dedication and progress -- but this is what I saw in it.

Art And The Good Life

The Gorilla Girls artwork reminds me of the murals we looked at in the Sharing section of our studies. One of those murals we discussed in the discussion section conveyed the desire to get children off of the streets and into loving homes. This work does something similar, it shouts to an audience about the unnecessary sexism present in artwork. Women are under appreciated in art, yet 76 percent of models in modern art are women. Thus, the poster brings up the question: "Do women have to be naked to get into the Met. Museum?" By depicting a woman with a gorilla head as the model for this poster, the artist provides satire to male inspiration based on female models in art.

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