Good Life Tour of the Harn Carly Sampson

Medium of the Art/ Technique of the Artist

Selfie with the piece- Admittedly, I wasn't the best at getting both the piece and myself in the frame with any degree of clarity, so I'll include separate photos of the pieces themselves.
Yoruba people, Nigeria; Ancestor Spirit Masquerade Costume (Egungun)

To me, the most important part of this piece is what the wearer is supposed to represent. This costume is worn during a masquerade that honors the spirits of ancestors that have passed on. The layers of fabric come from each generation of family members, and the fabric is meant to give thanks to a family's ancestors for helping the family to continue to thrive throughout generations. The most striking part of this piece, of course, is what happens when it is worn. When it is used during masquerades, the wearer twirls around to the beat of drums. The spinning causes the layers of fabric to fly up, giving the wearer an otherworldly appearance, and thus representing the spirit of passed generations. To me, the artwork is a form of honor and memory of one's ancestors. Staying in touch to one's family in such a literal way is a unique and touching experience. I'm moved by the idea that these costumes are also present at funeral rites, symbolizing that the spirits of deceased family members are always still there to watch over the living.

Design of the Museum

David Greenbaum; Untitled (Yvette Kiln Wrecker)

As far as the design of the museum goes, what I liked the most were the different gardens that I would happen upon as I wandered through the different exhibits. The small installations offer a natural landscape in which to exhibit art. The best aspect of this setting is, by far, the natural light. It provides an entirely new dimension for the piece displayed inside. In fact, the entire installation makes me forget I'm inside a museum, and offers the illusion that I'm wandering through a garden, perusing different works of art. I like to feel a connection to nature, and these outdoor installations help me do just that.

Art and Core Values

Lola Alvarez Bravo; Frida Looking Into Mirror

The meaning behind this photo is what makes it relative to my core values. The photographer was one of Frida Kahlo's dearest friends, and was by her side when she was sick and bedridden. After the accident that put her in a body cast, Bravo always said that there were two Fridas living inside her, one living and one dead. And so, this photo relates to one of my core values; personal growth. The artwork makes me feel that it's okay to be confused about my identity, and okay to still have some work to do on myself.

Art and the Good Life

George Grosz; Manhattan

This piece evokes a good life theme for me because of what it doesn't picture. The illustration of the skyline of Manhattan is more than just that; it's millions of lives all occurring at once. In my life, I was to be immersed in culture, in things happening. I want to be a witness to lives going on right in front of me. I've always thought of myself as the ultimate observer. In fact, one of my dreams is to simply observe the world and write about it. That's my Good Life. This piece makes me imagine myself in a city like Manhattan, living out my dream.

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