Sunday, August 11, 2013

Are We Having Fun Yet? Museums and the Businesses of Experience

High Culture Goes Hands-On. (The New York Times, 8/10/2013)

Excerpt:  But the spirit of “Work No. 965” is everywhere, common among curators, museum directors and, of course, artists. You could see it in “Rain Room,” the popular summer installation at MoMA PS1 that was billed as giving “visitors the experience of controlling the rain.” 

You could see it when the Metropolitan Museum’s summer rooftop installations like “Big Bambú” by the Starn Twins (2010) 

and Tomás Saraceno’s mirrored, modular habitat “Cloud City” (2012) 

— both walk-through experiences — become the talk of the town, while Anthony Caro’s steel sculptures (2011)

and this year’s landscapes by Imran Qureshi did not.    (Don't think this is what Dorbrzynski is referring to)

At the New Museum of Contemporary Art, Carsten Höller’s appropriately named “Experience,” which gave visitors the opportunity to slide down a corkscrew path from the fourth floor to the second and was described, according to The New York Times, “as an art world amusement park,” drew lines around the block in 2011.

Need I mention Marina Abramovic’s “The Artist Is Present” at the Museum of Modern Art in 2010, a participatory performance piece that had New Yorkers queuing up for hours to sit in silence opposite the artist, who simply stared in return? What was that about but the experience?

No comments: