Good Life: Tour of the Harn By: Madeline Worthington

Medium of the Art / Technique of the Artist

As I walked through the museum taking in all of the art I found myself constantly coming back to this piece entitled Ode a l' Oubli by Louise Bourgeois. I found the use of woven remnants of cloth as a medium for the artist as original because she gathered all of these pieces throughout her life time. As a child she assisted her parents tapestry restoration business so gathering pieces of discarded cloth was fairly easy. Also, I found how the art work was displayed intrigued me. The two cloths that are at either end of the arranged pictures made me wonder if they were more significant to the artist. The different variations of the cloth the artist chose I believe that they represent different parts and aspects of her life in a formulated way. Her use of life events into her work is inspiring because she has found a way to express herself through a different medium of art.

Design of the Museum

Walking through the museum I realized that the design of the museum transitioned according to the exhibit it was showcasing. Through this it allowed me to connect with the pieces more because the space that the art was in also reflected the general sense of the work. For example in the American Abstraction exhibit the art that was displayed was that of different abstractions, but the room itself was very intriguing. The circular room where the pieces were held had a large triangle on the roof to add to the theme of abstraction. Also, in the Asian art wing, the space where the art was held represented an Asian type of architecture with eloquent wood floors and paneling. The entire atmosphere of the room added to the overall effect of the exhibit. In each of the different exhibits lighting played a key role in setting the tone for the art. Casting a beautiful light on some extraordinary pieces of art to capture the full beauty it has to offer. I found that when walking around to the different wings of the museum my thoughts towards those pieces changed based upon the groupings of the art.

Art and Core Values

Old Man's Cloth by El Anatsui

This piece entitled Old Man's Cloth by El Anatsui was through the use of discarded bottle tops of brand name liquor bottles first introduced by the colonists. This piece at first caught my attention because the use of trash as a means of creating beauty was inspiring. From taking someone else's trash and turning it into something completely different as a way to shed light on the country's colonial legacy as well as the patterns of consumption and waste is a great way to provoke thought on the use of materials. One of my main core values is gratitude for all things in this world. The artist El Anatsui saw the beauty in the discarded liquor bottles left behind by the colonists turning them into a beautiful work of art. He appreciated the value of the wrappings and saw more than just trash left behind. This piece gives me a sense of appreciation towards the little things that to one may not be seen as beautiful but to another it is pure gold.

Art and the Good Life

I got called out by an old woman for taking this picture....

This sculpture of the Seated Buddha is a perfect representation of the good life theme of seeking. During the seeking theme we discussed Siddhartha and his journey towards enlightenment and how everyone's path in life is not the same as those around you. It is determined by what you want to achieve and the choices you make throughout your life. One cannot have all of the answers to life's difficult questions but only find those answers through trial and error. That is why everyone journey is different from others because everyone has different expectations for themselves. Seeking the good life is a long and tedious journey but it will all one day be worth it when you have reached your goal in the end. This sculpture which originally had a hand held up facing outward was a symbol of (mudra) reassurance to all.

Additional images I enjoyed throughout my time in the museum

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