Good Life Tour of the Harn Simon Zheng

Medium of the Art / Technique of the Artist

Asian jade vases and sculptures.
The jade vases and sculptures that I saw at the Harn Museum were exquisite, I just couldn't take my eyes off of them. I've always thought that jade only comes in the color green and despised the color, but I was wrong. To see that Jade could come in such a wide array of colors amazed me. Not only that, the amount of detail put into each vase and sculpture is stunning. Especially the sculptures, you can almost feel as if you are there in the scenery depicted in the sculpture. The artist puts a lot of effort to create a foreground, middleground, and background in the piece which brings the Scenery to life. Personally, the sculptures exhibit a sort of peace and happiness. For instance, the smiles on the people in the sculptures give off a warm and friendly vibe.

Design of the Museum

Garden located in the Asian exhibition of the Harn Museum.
My favorite exhibit of the Harn was the Asian wing of the museum. I thought the use of outdoor space was particularly effective. By having the garden overlaying the background of the Asian wing, you immediately feel like a part of the culture when you enter. The garden in the background gives the visitors a sense of what an Asian garden looks like. It also provides a quiet place for people to de-stress and relax. Furthermore, it is a chance for the visitors to take in the beauty of nature and truly immerse themselves in a different culture.

Art and Core Values

Buddhist artifact in the Korean section of the Harn Museum.
I was really surprised when I saw the swastika on the Buddhist artifact. Having been raised in western culture, I was taught to associate the swastika with the Jewish genocide that took place in Nazi Germany. However after reading the description, I realized that the swastika in fact represents peace and goodness in it's original context. I have always strived to be a kind, caring, and humble person so I thought the original meaning behind the swastika was a core value that I could relate with. The Artwork has also made me identify a fault in myself, I should not have labeled the art as a symbol of hatred before I had even read the true meaning behind the sculpture.

Art and the Good Life

Photograph of a girl who is described as "trying to appear to appear natural".
I find that this piece of artwork reflects the theme of embodying the good life which focuses on the physical aspect associated with it. For instance, physical appearances and physical health are all examples of embodying the good life. The girl in the photograph is described as "trying to appear natural" in the caption which is a major topic in this theme. To truly live a healthy and happy life, I believe that a person must first accept who they are. The girl is in the picture is trying to be more "natural" or "normal", but that is not who she is as a person. Instead, when she attempts to be more "natural" she makes herself more insecure about her own image. Overall, the artwork has really made me reflect on who I am as a person and understand the importance of self acceptance.

The End

Entrance to the Harn Museum.

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