In retrospect, maybe it was the mischievous adventure of the event, maybe it was the attention I received in that moment over my sibling rivals, but every moment, out the door of the apartment, down the streets, into the museum’s elevator, and from one end of the massive painting to the next—I think we looked at it for 20 minutes, and even that felt rushed—was magic.
eing away from campus and adapting to a lifestyle of social distancing has changed my way of thinking about how to conscientiously inhabit space with or without others. One of my favorite Princeton University Art Museum exhibits, Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment (2018), is resonating with me in new ways right now. I’ve always loved living in the city, but during the pandemic I’ve been lucky to be able to spend most of my time in rural New Hampshire. Usually, I learn to love a place because of the people who make it feel like home, so it feels very different to develop an appreciation for a place precisely because it offers isolation.
In light of the systemic oppression and discrimination brought to light by the Black Lives Matter movement, SAB member Brian Gitahi takes a look at some of the unseen peoples living in Kenya and art-making at the Kakuma Refugee Camp through the Artists for Refugees project.
The deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum just outside of Boston is where I learned to ride a bike as a kid. Its wide-open space made it the perfect spot for a small child to whiz along unhampered. I rediscovered this haven for the first time in many years during a family birthday picnic on Sunday. The atmosphere at the park has changed slightly – visitors move with caution, donning masks and skirting each other on pathways. There’s a two-hour time limit on each visit to reduce density in the park. But despite these reminders of our new COVID world, the sculptures, many of which have been there as long as I can remember, emanate a sense of solidity and peace.
My interest in analog photography, and a class I took last semester on German Media Theory segued into a desire to learn more about cultural tools to see, record, and document. Cyanotypes gave me a new lens through which to look at my immediate environment — to focus on color, contour, shape, and opacity and critically think about how I see and define shapes.
“In 2013 I was fortunate enough to visit the National Gallery of Art to view a special exhibition — “Diaghalev and the Ballet Russes: When Art Danced With Music.” It showcased the history, theatricality, and unparalleled artwork of the Ballet Russes, a Russian ballet company that performed in the mid 20th century, breaking all traditions of ballet and dance.” Anika Yardi ’21 reflects on her experience, “The more I went through the exhibition, the more I was able to draw parallels between my dance practice and the art I saw before me. I saw similarities between the colorful costumes, the mythological and ancient stories being played out on a stage, and even the sense of camaraderie that can only come from putting on a production…. This experience made me reconsider my notion of what constituted art, and ever since then I have viewed both the dances that I perform and the art that I love in a more golden light.”
“As I passed the renowned glass Pyramid and the crowds of tourists, I wondered if the experience of actually seeing world-famous works of art would live up to the anticipation. Nevertheless, the knowledge of standing in a labyrinth of art— the city’s largest museum, each work crafted from an artist’s own hands and a reflection of their heart and their respective places in society, was enough to remind me that there’s always something to learn for the willing viewer.”
The exhibition was designed to focus on issues surrounding land use in the “countryside”, roughly defined as any non-urban area… I love art museums and think that finding a sustainable human-environment relationship is one of the most pressing issues of our day, but I don’t generally think of art museums as champions of environmental activism—I wanted to see how these topics were brought together in this “not-art-exhibition”.
Usually when going to an art museum, I expect to mill around the galleries looking at various paintings or wander down a few statue-filled corridors. However, my visit to Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibition in Seattle completely turned my idea of being immersed in art on its head. The long-term exhibition first opened at Seattle Read more about Color on a Cloudy Day – A Visit to Seattle’s Chihuly Garden and Glass Exhibition – Sienna Byrne ’23[…]
Annabelle Berghof ’23 describes her experiences drawing and painting – a way for her to find a moment of peace and an escape from her surroundings.