Saturday, July 25, 2015

Graduated Fergusonification


  To be clear: art museums are not places tasked primarily to educate but to hold public display of select masterpieces. Education should happen before and after one goes to visit a museum. Nobody is listening to a symphony while someone is "explaining" or even eating with running commentary. Do one or the other, not both at the same time. Looking at paintings requires immersion in the same kind of silence and concentrated attentiveness in which language of painting is silently eloquent. Too much is made of the '"explanations" of artworks and not enough emphasis put on contemplation. My contemporaries not only see on the screen the action but they want to be told that "Tyrone passed the ball to Leroy". Then they have to be told what the Prez in his speech actually said and what they see while staring distractedly at art.
I guess that most people  are devout democrats at heart that rejoice seeing all-inclusiveness in every public activity.To my eye it seems particularly "american" to see that degree of inclusiveness. It is as if some mythic Mother held on her public lap everybody and their children,even toddlers and demented nonagenarians,spastic wheel-chair riders and uncontrollable pranksters,overly energetic four-years- olds running and hooting along the loggias of the museums.Nobody and never should feel the stinging bite of exclusion.Come all! Come and bring along not only children but your beloved pets to be posed for some selfies with art in the background as a campy joke. .Anything but increasing chances at concentration and silence.


What a total misunderstanding of the purpose of the museum. It is not a „fun place”, not a romper room or hall of distorting mirrors. Bringing smart-phones  to take yet more snap-shots of your marvelous Self is almost as disqualifying as blindness[or more-because  willful donkification is worse]

Malignant notion that it is good to bring in more and more wrong people is going to turn them into high culture lovers is not supported by any facts. It is the “midnight-basketball for ghetto thugs” way of thinking. Leave smart-phone crowd alone: they are evolving in a different direction and Occidental Heritage of Culture has only one use, they found: funny background .

 At a nearby library most seats in the Reading Room are taken but the occupants are taking extended naps, use restroom to body-wash, have speedy sex and over time I have never noticed that they started perusing the aisles for reading material.The painters exhibiting their masterpieces at the National Gallery have not addressed their works to those selfie-ninnies.The curators,the management furnished them with wrong audience , hostile to Culture. What a dismaying betrayal.

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