My Experience at the Harn By Nicolette Zangara

Technique & Medium

Day of the Dead Tree with Figures- made with papier-mâché and wood. I personally found this piece, like others in this group, especially breathtaking. I paint quite often and I love to create art out of strokes of a paint brush, but the world of wood and papier-mâché blows my mind. The fact this artist spent so long with intricate details of every bone in the skeleton is very commendable. I also really admire how the art was done in respect to the Day of the Dead. This very special Mexican holiday is unappreciated in these times, and this gives a light hearted perception of this holiday. This artwork made me feel connected to the skeletons because they were just doing similar activities I would do as a kid. I think this adds a very humane concept to something inanimate. The smile on their faces with the little blush they have makes it seem like the afterlife is just as happy and normal as reality.

Design of the Museam

Near the Asian wing of the museum, I found this beautiful area dedicated to pottery. I felt like this wing was a combination of modern and traditional designs. For example, the triangle pillars next to the bookshelves filled with beautiful pottery contrasted each other perfectly. This mainly had the influence of Asian cultures from China, Japan, Central Asia, and South/Southeast Asia. Walking around I felt really open and comfortable with the space. The lighting mixed with the shapes and open space really tied the space together. I could sit there all day and meditate because the overwhelming feeling of comfortability was refreshing to my day. For once in my day I felt at peace.

Art & Core Values

As a woman, I feel like this part of the museum was very personal to my core values. I always like to be proud of who I am, which includes the mere fact that I am a strong woman. In my lifetime, I've overcome a lot of very big problems, and I'm lucky to be still going today. One of the ways I identify myself is as a feminist. I believe that women's rights should be equal to any man's rights. That being said, art is very weird when it comes to a woman's body. Women are usually seen as sex objects in this industry, focussing on their naked bodies. All of these pieces were about how women are in the art industry. I related with these pieces a lot because they highlighted the truth behind the struggle of women made art. Usually women are naked in big museums and that creates a lot of controversy between artists and spectators alike. These pieces, though, make me feel proud to be a woman. I feel proud that we are represented in a beautiful way and that we are working towards a better society with equality.

Art & the Good Life

Islandia, the Goddess of Healing Waters was something that stood out to me as expressing the Good Life. This sculpture is truly a symbol of a movement with strength and hope. This also relates to the overpowering theme of feminism, but this statue is more than that. The Goddess of Healing Waters provides giving and taking equally. She heals and she uses their benefits to find purpose to keep fighting and living on. I believe this is a great example of the Good Life because she finds the true balance in herself to give and take. She has her purpose and her outlook on life, which is such a big part of embracing the Good Life. I appreciate the embracement of the Good Life more because this goddess shows that you can find balance in your life even if you were only supposed to have one sole purpose. She made herself more than that, fictionally, and that's more than enough to aspire to.

Overall, my trip to the Harn was very enlightening to me. I found peace within myself and connected to multiple pieces throughout my time there. Here are just a few more I found moving/eye catching to me. I cannot wait to go back to see what new additions they have in store.


Created with images by alans1948 - "harn-02622"

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