Harn Museum of Art Ana Lop

Medium of the Art

One of the most surprisingly astonishing pieces found at the Harn Museum of Art was this lithograph by Hispanic artist Emilio Sanchez, whose organic colors caught my sight as I entered the Latin American exhibit. In spite of it not being what most people think of when art comes to mind, the subject of the Sanchez's creation and the medium through which it was achieved is what makes it so striking. Being from the Caribbean - the place from which the artist drew much of his inspiration - it is very interesting to see how sometimes mundane views and objects can be perceived by others and serve as inspiration to recreate them so beautifully.

Casita al Mar (Little House by the Sea), 1974

Design of the Museum

One of the grandest places in the museum is definitely its Asian Collection, which covers thousands of years of history through ceramics, metalworks, paintings, and stone sculptures. Besides the artwork that makes up this wing, it is also the way in which they are distributed and their location next to the Museum's Gardens that add to its impressiveness. Although the comparison could be a bit too much of a reach, it was impossible not to think of Japan's Kyoto and its world renowned gardens. Although a miniature and much more humble representation at best, the presence of nature right behind such incredible pieces of art were crucial to creating a remarkable space.

Images of the Asian Collection

Art and Core Values

Finding this image of Frida Kahlo and Leon Trotsky was definitely one of the most unexpected things that happened during my visit. Trotsky, former leader of the Soviet Red Army during the Bolshevik Revolution and Stalin's fiercest adversary, fled Russia in the late 1920s and spent years in exile throughout Europe and Mexico before being assassinated in 1940. Although I knew that Frida and Diego Rivera identified as communists - as was common among the period's intellectual and artistic elite - I did not think they were as involved in the cause as they apparently were. After further research, it came to my knowledge that Kahlo and Rivera not only had a friendship with Trotsky, but were in fact in charge of hiding him throughout his stay in Mexico. While this might seem to others as something that merely happened in Frida Kahlo's life, this same thing touches me at a very personal level being an immigrant from a Communist country. Although Trotsky is not to blame for my country's misfortunes, he played a very important role in the Soviet Union's failed development as a "paradise for the workers" and the mere idea that Frida had insight into this and did absolutely nothing but support it, is extremely unsettling. The way in which this photograph brought some truth to light definitely changed my perspective on a woman that I had previously considered to be admirable.

ACME Photo: Mrs. Trotsky, Frida Kahlo, Leon Trotsky, and Max Shachtman, 1937

Art and the Good Life

Florida Landscape, William Morris Hunt - 1875

This oil painting on canvas by William Morris Hunt has been screaming to meĀ Walden by Henry David Thoreau from the very moment saw it. Ever since I was first introduced to 19th century Transcendentalism, I have considered it to be the ideal way of life; one in which introspection is key and self-reliance the only way. In Walden specifically, Thoreau explores and promotes the idea of simple living in natural surroundings, both of which the painting seems to fit especially well.

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