The Arts: TOUR OF HARN MUSEUM By wanchen wang


As the biggest art museum in Gainesville, The Harn Museum is definitely the best place to feel and appreciate the fine arts. Although this tour is short, I learned a lot from the artworks and really enjoyed the atmosphere of arts in the museum. The only regret was that I didn't bring my glasses with me, so I couldn't view and appreciate the works as a whole, or from a more macro perspective.

Medium of the Art / Technique of the Artist

I choose this untitled sculpture by Joel Shapiro as the one to show the techniques of the artist and the medium of art. This sculpture is made by white bronze. And the design of this simple artwork is very intriguing to me because of its shape. This seemingly unbalanced shape is composed by a "heavy" top and a "light" bottom. Normally, this kind of composition will lead the sculpture to be unstable and easy to fall down. But the artist's ingenious design makes it stay by the little square. It represents a person, so I think the creator is trying to tell people about the potential power of human bodies and persuade people to be confident of their bodies. I could feel about the unpredictable power of bodies.

Design of the Museum

My favorite wing in Harn is the exhibition of modern collections. I am not really an art person, but compared with other styles of arts, such as impressionism, abstractionism and so on, I prefer the modern arts because the modern arts are closer to my life and easier to understand. Also, in this wing, there is a lot of landscape artworks, like Morning Snow on Bamboo by Lilian May Miller. Because I recognize myself as a traveler, landscapes attract me and arise my sympathy. For me, the artworks in this exhibition are more interesting and enjoyable.

Art and Core Values

This work is La tauromaquia (The Art of Bullfighting) by Francisco Goya from Spain. This series of artworks show the bullfighting, a famous Spanish tradition. Maybe the bullfighting is supposed to represent the braveness of matadors, but from my point of view, it shows the relationship between human beings and the nature. One of my core values is the nature. I firmly believe that the power of nature, including animals and the physical environment, is immeasurable. Humans have to keep a good relationship with the nature, or we will be hurt. Just as the paintings show, sometimes matadors defeat the bulls and sometimes the bulls hurt, even kill the matadors. If we treat the nature well, we can survive; however, if we do extremely bad things to the nature, we will take the consequences. These paintings evoke my emotion of respect and fear towards the nature.

Art and the Good Life

This photograph of Frida Kahlo is taken by Edward Weston, an American photographer, and the name of this artwork is the same as its character. The subject matter of this photo are Frida Kahlo and her beautiful costumes. The reason why I chose this photo as the connection of art and good life was not only that we talked about Frida Kahlo in the class, but also that this photo shows people's unstoppable persuasion of beauty which is part of good life. No matter how we see beauty differently, everyone loves wants to be beautiful. Although with an unhealthy physical condition, Frida Kahlo wears her beautiful costumes in this photo to tell people that they have the right and freedom to run for beauty. I used to think that beauty is how others see you, but this photo teaches me that I decide my own beauty.

All photos are taken by me at Harn Museum.

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