Tour of the Harn Bianca Gavaller

Takaezu, Toshiko. White Closed-Form Vessel. 1990s. Glazed stoneware. Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville

This piece is titled "White Closed-Form Vessel" by Toshiko Takaezu. The medium Takaezu used is glazed stoneware, and upon seeing it in a photograph, you would think it is another ordinary vase. However, when I saw this in the Harn in person, I was intrigued. Looking closer at it, you can see little rivets in the vessel, and the texture looks smooth; so much so that you would want to reach out and touch it if not for its glass case. While the medium initially drew me in, Takaezu's technique blew my mind. Takaezu occasionally wrote messages inside her closed-form vessels, such as this one. Her messages were meant for herself, not a viewer admiring her work. The only way the messages could be viewed would be to break the vessel, simultaneously destroying the art. Beauty must be destroyed in order to find the message. But, what if the message was never meant to be found? This mystery was one of the most impactful things I experienced at the Harn. Takaezu's artwork and her technique spoke to me, reminding me that sometimes in life, there must be mystery. There must be unknowns, things we might not ever discover in our lifetimes. Why? As Takaezu might put it, it makes us "alive".

David A. Cofrin Asian Art Wing

The David A. Cofrin Asian Art Wing in the Harn museum was my favorite to be in. The design entails white/cream walls with wooden paneling. The paneling on the walls is of light-colored wood, while the ceiling panels are slightly darker, and the paneling on the floor is a deep brown. The wing instantly felt inviting and warm, and without even looking at the displays yet, I enjoyed just being there. The lights in the wing had a warm, yellow hue, and were bright enough to see the art, but not overbearingly so. Overall, the wing just felt so inviting and like a place I could get lost in for hours exploring.

Guerrilla Girls, Do Women Have to be Naked to Get Into the Met Museum? Update, 2012, Print, Museum Purchase, funds provided by the Caroline Julier and James G. Richardson Acquisition Endowment

This statement piece by the Guerrilla Girls resonated with me. The bright yellow background, bold font, and huge in-your-face image forces you to focus on the message. The way the work was presented allowed me to dive into this message, one that I discovered was one of my own core values. Lately, with all of the turmoil going on with the presidency, I've started to become more of an activist for myself and women in general. I have always been for equality of the sexes, but I never expressed my opinion as openly and as strongly as I have been in the past few months. Because this piece of work communicates the message of inequality that women still experience today, it sparked that spirit of activism that I hold as one of my core values, in me. The piece gave me new information about the specific inequality in art, but it did not suddenly open my eyes to the fact inequality exists. However, because this message was so boldly presented to the public, I immensely appreciated the awareness it raised.

Graves, Nancy. II-06-94. 1994. Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville
Graves, Nancy. II-06-94. 1994. Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville

This abstract sculpture by Nancy Graves has a lot of elements. Music notes, skulls, teeth, purple birds, and much more are included in her artwork. To me, this creates the perfect balance of what the "good life" should be. Death, beauty, music, and everything in between is needed in life so we can experience it all. A balance of all these elements is needed to create the perfect harmonious life. I don't believe we can have beauty, without death, for example. The presence of each element in this piece, and in life, allows us to appreciate its contrasting element. Without ever experiencing the ugly, how can we identify the beauty? The way Graves's piece depicts this theme in such a beautifully chaotic way allows for introspection in our own lives. Do we have all these elements? Are we missing something? These questions and their answers are what allow us to create the good life for ourselves.

Created By
Bianca Gavaller

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.