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Saturday 28 April 2012
For months, Mom has been bugging me to schedule a time to accompany her to the Picasso to Warhol exhibit at the Atlanta High Museum of Art. Since the exhibit finally closes this week, I at last acquiesced, and we went to the exhibit on Wednesday.
Mom hated it.
The exhibit included some very famous works by Romare Bearden, Louise Bourgeois, Constantin Brancusi, Alexander Calder, Giorgio De Chirico, Marcel Duchamp, Jasper Johns, Fernand Léger, Henri Matisse, Joan Miró, Piet Mondrian, Pablo Picasso, Jackson Pollock, and Andy Warhol. I admit, I'm no fan of the early 20th-century abstractionists either. I personally cannot related to the cold aesthetic of Miró, Mondrian, or Picasso. I can't respect Matisse or Pollock, neither of whom could paint any better than kindergartners. I consider so much of the work of Brancusi, Calder, and Johns to be little more than decoration (which I don't disparage but also don't find worship worthy). Fortunately, the exhibition did include works by Duchamp and Warhol, who I admire for their shared "anything you can get away with is art" moxie.
Mom spent her brief time in the exhibition hall pushing politely past the headset-wearing crowd of audio-tourists. Even a casual observer would have noticed that she was determined to spend as little time among these "masterpieces" as possible. I finally caught up to her in the gift shop, where she spent more time looking at MOMA-branded furniture and postcards of Atlanta landmarks than at any work by those so-called 20th-century masters.
Beauty, it seems, is in the eye of the shopper.
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