Good Life Tour of the Harn Museum By vivian graham

Medium of the Art / Technique of the Artist

"Chinese" Style Fancy Dress Costume

The piece of artwork I chose to represent Medium of the Art / Technique of the Artist is this piece, titled "Chinese" Style Fancy Dress Costume by Francis Kodow Coker. For the body covering part of this piece, the medium used is cotton and nylon zipper. For the face mask the medium used wire, paint, and sisal, which is a type of fiber. This dress is worn traditionally as a masquerade costume. Seeing this costume in the museum was very neat because by seeing it on a mannequin I was able to picture it on a real person, opposed to just seeing a photo of it. The most striking part of this piece for me was the colors used. The vibrancy of the colors made me feel happy and boosted my mood. It communicated energy to me, and I can picture those who traditionally wore costumes like these dancing.

Design of the Museum

I really enjoyed the design of the museum in the fact that it is like a maze. Without consulting my map, I had no idea what was around each corner. I went to the Harn on a rainy day, so the lighting inside was a very nice contrast to the grayness outside. For this same reason, I didn't go into any of the outdoor gardens, but i enjoyed viewing them from inside. I thought it was very neat how there were different wings for different regions of the globe, and I felt like I was in Epcot going from region to region. My favorite wing of the museum is the one pictured, because of its large window overlooking the garden. I loved looking out at the rainy day, and I would love to go back on a sunny day and see how the light filters in through the window.

Art & Core Values

A piece in the Harn that I really enjoyed was this photo, titled "Three girls holding hands." This photo is by Sebastiao Salgado, and in the description of the piece it is stated that he is widely renowned for his "arresting and socially conscious photographs documenting communities around the world." It also notes that he particularly takes photo of the effects of poverty, industrialization, and political repression. This photo appealed to my core values because I am a firm believer in the importance of having a worldview. People need to become educated on what is happening on a global scale, not just in their own backyards, and based on his biography I believe Salgado shares this belief and goal. Salgado doesn't educate people using his words, but with photos that capture human emotion and teach us in that way. This photo makes me feel slightly melancholy, but the fact that the girls are holding hands gives me hope. It gives me a better understanding of the universality of friendship.

Art and the Good Life

This piece is titled "Maiden Spirit Face Mask (agbogho nmuo)" and is made by the Igbo people of the Ogidi area of Nigeria. Its medium is wood, paint, fabric, and mirrors. To me, this mask conveys the good life theme of embodiment. This mask is supposed to represent the idealized image of beauty in a young woman, and this young woman is supposed to "Embody the power of beauty and pride in her family." Embodying the good life includes considering how physical appearance plays a part in the pursuit of a good life. The fact that the mask is an "idealized image of a beautiful young woman" shows that this society values a certain image of beauty that may be different than western ones.

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