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By Giulio Sorgini, graduate student in the Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art

I’d like to offer another possible answer to the question “when are copies useful?” which Copycat co-curator Alexis Goodin posed in the wall text for her exhibition and in an accompanying blog post.

In the Fall of 2011, I took a seminar on the American painter John Singer Sargent (1856–1925). The professor, Marc Simpson, had each of the students in the class choose one of Sargent’s pictures in the Clark collection to study over the course of the semester. I chose Blonde Model of circa 1877—a modestly sized oil painting (roughly eighteen inches tall by fifteen inches wide) that depicts the head and shoulders of a nude female model.

For our first assignment of the semester, Professor Simpson had each of us make a pencil drawing of the painting we had chosen. It’s worth noting that the quality of our drawings was, in this case, of little importance. The point of Professor Simpson’s assignment was not for each of us to produce great works of art—as you can see below, such a project would be beyond my artistic capabilities! The emphasis here was on the process of drawing, which requires careful looking over a long period of time. Whereas I might have spent five or ten minutes in front of Blonde Model had I not been asked to draw it, I stood in front of the painting for upwards of an hour.

Copying a work of art may help you observe things you previously hadn’t noticed. In the case of Blonde Model, I had barely considered the manner in which Sargent applied paint to canvas until I set out to draw it. I noticed that the model’s hair, for instance, was merely suggested by several exuberant strokes of the brush; the background and the model’s chest were similarly painted with little concern for detail. This loose handling of the paint was, for me, a strong indication that Blonde Model was conceived of as a studio exercise, and not a commissioned painting.

In the subject’s face, I observed Sargent’s method of applying color in “patches,” as opposed to blending the paint to create a completely smooth or homogenous surface. After a bit of research, I learned that Sargent’s technique here was consistent with the instruction he’d received in the atelier of the Parisian artist Carolus Duran. Sargent’s early training under Duran was ultimately a major component of my seminar paper.

In an age where high-quality digital reproductions are easily accessible, it may seem unnecessary for someone studying a work of art to spend time drawing it. But I have found that any activity that prolongs my engagement with an original art object is worth doing. By fixing my attention on Sargent’s painting, I was able to see things I wouldn’t have noticed if I had only looked at it briefly or in reproduction.

So I’d say that copying Blonde Model was useful for me in that it opened up multiple avenues for research.

 

Image credit:

John Singer Sargent (American, 1856–1925), Blonde Model, c. 1877. Oil on canvas © Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, 1955.574

Clark Copycats

By Deon Soogrim, Clark Intern

The Clark’s Copycat exhibit displayed a wide range of drawing, printmaking, and photographic techniques used for reproduction. Artistic creativity and intention vary depending on the artist and the work being copied. The works being displayed demonstrated the possibilities and limitations of past methods of reproducing art.

The computer application Adobe Photoshop has expanded the ways in which reproductions can be used to expand a work’s subject matter or to add comedy. Bouguereau’s  Nymphs and Satyr is popularly used as source material that is manipulated and expanded upon. We have found examples of his Satyr replaced with subjects like Spider-Man—and the entire painting being re-imagined as a Manga animation. We have also seen great works of art being incorporated into advertisements and creative responses to older works.

Nothing is safe.

Many works in the Clark’s collection have been appropriated by artists, advertisers, and copycats around the globe. I have collected a wide range of reproductions ranging from the artistic study to fantastic manipulations.

Degas remains as a source of artistic inspiration and study. Here a fellow artist has chosen to do a study of one of Degas’s ballerina paintings using oil pastel and charcoal. He does not cite a specific source of inspiration for this copy, but we can see clear similarities with the Clark’s Dancers in a Classroom. The artist uses a similar subject matter as Degas’s painting, paying attention to the ballerina’s scale and the way in which the frills of her tutu are rendered. Also the light rose-pink color unites the two paintings, though the artist uses a more vibrant color palette than the earth tones that Degas employs.

This artist employs Degas’s ballerina sculptures as a starting point to create a unique interpretation.  This work by Flickr user “Citybumpkin” modifies the Old Master’s work by using a light painting photography technique. We see the sculpture’s negative shape surrounded by crackling light and energy through the use of long exposure settings and L.E.D.  lights. Improvements in modern technology has given the artist new and exciting tools with which to reproduce and create unique works based works by artists like Degas.

Examples of reproduced images do not need to remain tied to their source imagery. This artist from DeviantArt.com completely re-imagines Bouguereau’s painting Nymphs and Satyr into an anime animation. The artist keeps the original work’s composition and general subject matter, but adds his own unique spin to the original work. It looks as if the drawing is placed somewhere in the future or on a different planet where people can fly!

This reproduction preserves Bouguereau’s painting completely, but reapplies it into advertising. Creative use of an image is not only limited to reproducing a new work of art based on a previous work. Instead, advertisers can use a work of art like Bouguereau’s Nymphs and Satyr to add additional attributes to their product. Hoffman Cigars sought to attract potential customers’ attention by adding what they saw as a provocative image to their cigar packaging. This use of the image reinserts Bouguereau’s painting into the popular vocabulary in a new and reworked way.

Tampax’s creative ad for their product is inspired by the classic example of Jean-Leon Gerome’s The Snake Charmer. We can see how Gerome inspired the creation of this advertisement by looking at its subject matter, context, and painting style. In both we are given a snake charmer who is manipulating their own respective “snakes.” Tampax replaces the snake from the original painting to one of their own products. The similarities continue as each work is situated in similar location, indicated by the subject sitting on the floor and the ornamentation on the walls. Though this ad is not a direct appropriation of the previous work , we can see how a painting made a hundred years ago can influence culture today.

Image credits:

Edgar Degas (French, 1834–1917), Dancers in the Classroom, c. 1880 © Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA, 1955.562

Edgar Degas (French, 1834–1917), Little Dancer Aged Fourteen, 1879-81 © Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA, 1955.45

William-Adolphe Bouguereau (French), Nymphs and Satyr, 1873 © Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA, 1955.658

Jean-Léon Gérôme (French, 1824–1904), The Snake Charmer, c. 1879. Oil on canvas, 82.2 x 121 cm. © Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA, 1955.51

Nine-time Grammy Award-nominee Janis Ian comes to the Clark for a remarkable double-header, featuring a free book reading on April 19 and a concert on April 20. Ian’s breakthrough hits “Society’s Child (Baby, I’ve Been Thinking)” and “At Seventeen” introduced this formidable talent to the world in the mid-sixties, and Ian has received critical acclaim for her boundary-breaking music ever since. Ian joins us today for a special interview, in which she talks about her roller coaster ride of a life in show business.

THE CLARK: In a conversation with NPR’s Robert Siegel, you said that the attention you received for your first song, “Society’s Child,” was a tough way to start your musical career—“with a song that everyone hates you for.” You received hate mail and death threats. How did this affect you, at such a young age?

JANIS IAN: Well, of course, it was terribly frightening. For years, I was scared of the audience every time I walked on stage. But it also taught me a huge lesson—that music is the most powerful of all the arts, because you need nothing more than a human being and a voice to change hearts and minds.

TC: About “At Seventeen,” you have said, “I’d never sing it in public. It was just too humiliating.” How so? And how have your feelings about this song changed through the years?

 JI: “At Seventeen” is about me. It’s about as personal a song as you can get. To unzip like that, in front of strangers…? Pretty scary. Pretty embarrassing.

My feelings began to change the first time I looked out over the audience and realized all of them felt the same way. That amazed me!

TC: You wrote your first song, “Hair of Spun Gold,” when you were twelve. Do you remember what drew you to songwriting, and what inspired this first song?

JI: I honestly don’t. There was always music in our home, and I’d been playing guitar for a couple of years. I think it was just a natural progression.

TC: What advice would you give your twelve-year-old self, if you could take her out for lunch?

JI: Don’t trust anyone with your money!

TC: You wrote a piece called “Tiny Mouse” for The Boat Project, “a 30ft boat crafted by an adventurous team of boat builders and volunteers from wood donated by the public. Each piece of wood has a moving, memorable or extraordinary story behind it,” which have become the inspiration for songs by selected singer-songwriters and musicians from different genres. What was the story that inspired “Tiny Mouse”?

JI: A young woman was going through her father’s things in the attic after he died. She ran across a jack-in-the-box clown with a little drawer at bottom, and found a tiny wooden mouse there. She remembered playing with it as a child. For me, the mouse inspired a song that could take things to the max, no holds barred. I kept thinking of Alice in Wonderland and The Wizard of Oz as I wrote it.

TC: You have said that Nebula Award-winning science fiction writer Mike Resnick is responsible for your first foray into science fiction writing. Why did he sign you up to write an anthology, and what did you learn from writing it?

JI: Mike kept saying he thought I could be a great short story writer and novelist, and I kept telling him I didn’t write stories or novels. He signed me up to force me into writing. I learned that I love to write, and it doesn’t matter what genre!

TC: You have built a successful writing career in many genres, including songwriting, autobiography, science fiction, essays, and poetry. Is there a genre that you would love to try, in which you have not yet experimented?

JI: I really haven’t begun to scratch the surface of writing fiction. I’ve finished exactly nine stories, and it’s going to take a lot more time than I’ve got to ever be good at it. I’m waiting until someone hands me enough money to stay home all the time, at which point I’m going to totally devote myself to that!

TC: You were the musical guest on the very first episode of Saturday Night Live. What do you remember from this performance?

JI: I had a fever of 104 and strep throat, so not much…I remember seeing Jim Henson with The Muppets and laughing my face off. Everyone was incredibly nervous because the show was live. Billy Preston was terrific. All the cast were really nice. No one knew it would be legendary!

TC: In 1983, you took a break from the music business that lasted nine years. What did you do during that time, and what brought you back to music?

JI: I learned not to be monochromatic—I studied a lot of forms besides my own, forms I could fail in, like classical ballet. Forms that led me to new things in my own work, like script analysis and acting. I never left music, though. I wrote all that time. I just didn’t record.

TC: How long did it take you to write Society’s Child: A Life in Song, and what was your process for writing the book?

JI: It took about five months, though I took a lot of time off during that period. I didn’t really have a process beyond the advice [fantasy writer] Mercedes Lackey gave me, which was “Sit butt in chair. Write.” Good advice!

TC: Of Society’s Child: A Life in Song, the ALA Booklist wrote, “She writes casually and conversationally about her ups and downs and the life lessons she learned. Even recounting decisions that were stupid (quite often) and bad things that happened to her (many), she keeps us on her side, hoping things eventually turn out well. Fans will love the book, of course, but many nonfans, too, should find this painfully candid memoir hard to put down.” Could you tell us how you felt during the release of such a “painfully candid” book?

JI: I tried not to think about it, really. I had a group of seven or eight “dedicated readers,” old and new friends and writers who read chapters as I finished and offered criticisms and comments, particularly if they felt I wasn’t putting enough heart into something. When I finished, before I turned it in, I contacted a number of people who are in the book and sent them copies, asking if they felt anything needed correction. (Several asked that I change their names in fact!) But for myself, I wasn’t nervous—I’ve always been pretty open about my life.

A guest post by Dallas-based contemporary artist Meg Fitzpatrick

John Singer Sargent is on my Top Ten List of best painters who ever lived. The Clark has lent four of his paintings to the Amon Carter Museum of American Art in Fort Worth, Texas, and one of them—Fumée d’Ambre Gris (Smoke of Ambergris)—is among my Sargent favorites.

Why is he in my pantheon? One reason is his masterful handling of paint.  As seen in Fumée, Sargent manipulates the color white in a way that every studio art teacher can use as a textbook example of how to handle white. There is no color white in nature; it exists only in a can or tube of manufactured paint. And, every beginner painter (myself included) automatically uses it straight from the tube; and, thus fails to capture the essence of sunlight or the subtle recesses of a distant wall. From Sargent we learn a trade secret: mix white with other colors to capture on canvas what you see in life.

To imitate sunlight, a touch of orange is the secret. To render a remote corner, violet grey is the solution. Fumée is basically a monochromatic painting, but on examination you rarely see white “straight” from the tube.

Here are a few other reasons, which are evident in Fumée, that I greatly admire Sargent. His compositions are cropped, a device that was modern for his time. He was innovative in his choice of subject matter, using travels to exotic locales for ideas. The North African woman inhaling vapors in Fumée was an image from a trip to Tangier.

Since I’ve opened and shared my art voting book, my number one favorite Sargent painting is The Daughters of Edward Darley Boit, which is on permanent display at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA). I remember being fortunate my senior year of college when I was selected to intern at the MFA. I’d take breaks and visit this painting—simply staring firsthand at the masterpiece that I had seen in an art history slide lecture.

When I lived in the Boston area decades later, I would again sit on the same wooden bench before the sisters and sketch as a way to practice drawing and linger with Sargent.  The study below is of eight-year-old Maria Louisa (the sister in the left corner). Of note, the Boit heirs gave the MFA the six-foot-tall, blue-and-white vases you see in the painting. They now flank this nearly life-size (87-3/8” x 87-5/8”) group portrait.

If you are a Sargent fan or simply like looking at an excellent painter’s work, I recommend the drive to Fort Worth. Sargent’s Youthful Genius: Paintings from the Clark is open through June 17, as is The Age of Impressionism: Great French Paintings from the Clark across the street at the Kimball Art Museum.

Image Credit:

John Singer Sargent (American, 1856–1925), Fumée d’Ambre Gris (Smoke of Ambergris), 1880. Oil on canvas, 139.1 x 90.6 cm. Acquired by Sterling Clark, 1914. Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts (1955.15)

Spring is coming! In honor of warmer weather, budding trees, and blossoming flowers, we hope you’ll enjoy these stunning photographs, taken by master photographer Allen Rokach.

Allen visited the Clark last summer to lead a workshop focusing on nature photography.  His photographs (and the photographs of the workshop participants) were so beautiful that we reconnected with Allen for this special interview, in which he talks about everything from Egyptian antiquities to wildflowers to geology—and shares his secrets to creating stunning photography.

THE CLARK: How did you get your start as a photographer?

ALLEN ROKACH: I began taking photographs some forty years ago while working as a geologist. My photos then were strictly functional, though I always enjoyed being in some of the beautiful outdoor locations. When I gave up geology, I decided to make photography my profession, though I wasn’t very good. I learned on the job, taking assignments for newspapers, magazines, and private clients. I also took workshops with some outstanding photographers, such as Ernst Haas, Bruce Davidson, Arnold Newman, and Roman Vishniac. They were wonderful people who guided me, encouraged me, and helped me transform my vision. In the late 1970s, I landed a position as Director of Photography at the New York Botanical Garden. That opened many doors for me professionally.

TC: Your work has spanned everything from public relations and photojournalism to art and sculpture to travel and profiles. Which area do you most enjoy, and why?

AR: I enjoy them all because each offers a unique challenge. But I have to admit that the travel and features photography I did for Time/Warner and other publications were the most fun. I enjoyed getting to visit some of the most beautiful and interesting locations on earth and meeting some of the world’s most amazing people. Imagine being sent on assignments to places like Papua New Guinea, Egypt, the Swiss Alps, Hawaii, and the American Southwest. And imagine photographing jazz musicians in New Orleans, magnificent gardens of Charleston, South Carolina, wildflowers across Texas, and country musicians at the Country Music Awards. It’s the reason I got into photography and the reason I stayed with it for nearly forty years.

TC: You have traveled the world on photographic assignments that range from the bulb fields of Holland and the antiquities of Egypt to the vast Amazonian rain forest. Could you tell us about one of your most memorable assignments?

AR: Believe it or not, one of my most memorable assignments was one I got early in my career—maybe that’s why it’s so memorable. Anne Millman and I proposed an idea to Science Digest Magazine on the mysteries of ancient Egypt. Anne, who is now my wife, is a great researcher and she had come across some interesting explanations about the creation of various Egyptian antiquities. She would write the article and I would photograph it. (By the way, working as a team was a big advantage in getting assignments since it saved the editors a lot of effort.)

We got the assignment and flew off to Egypt to gather more information and bring back photographs that, as the editor put it, had to be “smasheroos.” It was quite challenging. I had to shoot inside the dark interior chambers of the tombs without flash or other modern supplemental lighting. All I used was a relay of mirrors, replicating what some archeologists surmised was the illumination used in the past. Then I set up shots of the pyramids at night, again without added light.

Along the way, we got to meet the local people, many of whom helped us get the story and the images we needed. And we got to see the amazing temples, tombs, and landscapes of this ancient historic land. It was an exciting and exhilarating experience that made me realize photography can open many doors for me, if I do it well and come up with good ideas.

TC: Let’s take a look at some of the amazing photographs you took while leading the “Focus on Nature” workshop at the Clark. What inspired you about this foggy landscape scene?

AR: I took this photo during our first morning out. We had everything a nature photographer dreams of: an incredible sunrise, fog, mist, and a bank of low-hanging clouds as day broke. The sun merged with the mist, creating an amazing atmosphere of mystery on the landscape. Everyone enjoyed photographing in the fog and mist. The challenge is to the get the shot before the fog and mist disappear. I decided to use a panoramic format to draw the viewer’s attention to the mountain and cloud and to minimize the dark foreground. I slightly underexposed to add contrast, which helps emphasize the trees in the background and the mountain itself.

TC: Could you tell us about the choices you made in lighting and coloring these two images of the same flowers?

 AR: Actually, the lighting and color in these images are two different considerations. This is natural light but it’s filtered through the field of wildflowers. This soft, filtered light is ideal for a technique I call a “shoot through,” which involves getting low to the ground in a field or bed of flowers, selecting a subject that’s in the middle range from front to back and focusing on that flower using a narrow depth of field. This causes the foreground and background to be thrown out of focus while the subject remains relatively sharp and seems to float in the composition. If it’s a windy day, the movement of the flowers can register as a blur, adding to the impressionistic feel of this effect.

A “shoot through” gives the photographer an opportunity to experiment with selective sharpness and create unusual images of flowers that respond to the light and weather conditions at hand. These particular flowers were ideal candidates for a shoot through. Their petals were translucent, making it easy for the light to illuminate them. As for the color, I was not so taken with the golden/orange color of these flowers so I experimented with Photoshop to get a brighter yellow to achieve the aesthetic effect I wanted.

TC: What do you enjoy most about teaching?

AR: I enjoy sharing. After nearly forty years of making images, I believe I have the skill, knowledge, and experience to help my students become better at seeing the world; learning how to recognize what is beautiful versus photogenic; and to understand how to imagine what is possible with their cameras.

People ask me, “Is it possible to learn to be creative with the camera?” My experience has been that it certainly is! Some will learn from instructions and demonstrations; some will learn from the critique sessions, and some will gain insight by seeing how others approach the same subjects. A small group of photographers shooting in the same area and using the same basic equipment will see that each individual finds a unique photographic perspective. I get tremendous pleasure from guiding this learning process and seeing how much fun people have along the way.

TC: How did you and the participants spend your time here at the Clark during the “Focus on Nature” workshop?

AR: First, it’s important to realize that people don’t automatically think of the Clark as a location for nature photography. The Clark is known for art and its setting in a college town. So it shakes people up a bit to think in terms of nature, which is a good thing, because it makes people think outside the box and spurs them to be creative.

Once we got past that initial disorientation, I wanted participants to look with fresh eyes at the landscape all around the Clark and to see it with the sensibility of a nature photographer. That begins with an appreciation for natural light. That’s why I began the workshop with a presentation called “The Power of Natural Light.” In the presentation, I showed participants how to discover the beauty of every kind of natural light and how to capture it with their cameras.

Then, over the next two days, we took a series of outings, starting at sunrise and ending past sunset, exploring various settings around Williamstown, with an eye toward the light. The participants soon found out that shooting under rapidly changing lighting conditions is very challenging and they came to understand that decisions must be made quickly.

Between our outings, we worked in a classroom at the Clark to download and edit the images we had taken and hold our daily review session. This is always an eye-opener for participants because they realize how each person brings a different vision even though they are looking at the same scene.

If we liked what we saw, we probed to find out how the photographer approached it, visually and technically. If there were problems with an image, we discussed what the photographer might have been done differently. In this way, everyone became more familiar with the basic terminology used in digital photography (jpeg vs. raw, resolution, white balance, etc.); learned techniques to solve certain common problems—like getting the right exposure by using histograms or changing the ISO; or creating an interesting composition—and had a chance to learn about workflow procedures and after capture techniques that I use to enhance and/or “fix” a photo. Most important, we learned to expand our creative vision by seeing what was possible with the right imagination.

Of course, each day and each review session is different, but the concept is the same and it always enables participants to become better photographers.

TC: What was the main lesson that you intended participants to take away from the workshop?

AR: My intention always is to make all the participants better photographers, no matter where they are when they start. I know from many years of offering photo workshops that everyone has a creative core, everyone can learn, and everyone can improve. We may learn in different ways and at different speeds. We may start from different places. Some may need to learn techniques and develop their skills. Others may need to find their personal vision and gain confidence in finding their creative selves. We are all unique and I believe that everyone can create meaningful, imaginative photographs. Photography is wonderfully accessible means of self-expression.

I give participants a handout of my 10 commandments for better photography, and I’ll share it here with you:

  1. Think for yourself: Don’t let fancy gadgets think for you.
  2. Less is more: Include only what is necessary in each frame; eliminate anything extraneous.
  3. Light is everything: Use every kind of light to its best advantage.
  4. Be objective: The camera sees everything; train your eye to do the same.
  5. Imagine before you shoot: The picture your camera takes can only be as good as the picture your mind creates.
  6. Make it simple: As a photographer your task is to make order out of chaos.
  7. Beauty is made, not found: Ordinary objects seen by a sensitive eye are transformed into extraordinary images.
  8. Master your equipment: Understand your gear so that it serves the intentions of your eyes and mind.
  9. Never say “done”: There is always one more way to shoot the picture.
  10. Express yourself: The joy of photography comes from the ability to project a unique vision that you can share with others.

TC: You have been invited to judge local, national, and international photographic competitions. What makes a photograph truly great?

AR: To paraphrase a Supreme Court justice’s response to a different question, “I know it when I see it!” More seriously, I think there are elements that make a photograph truly great, though few photographs have them all: 1) an emotional connection to the viewer; 2) a dynamic composition; 3) interesting light; 4) a unique point of view; 5) the decisive moment; and 6) humor.

Interested in learning more about how to take stunning professional photographs? Join Allen Rokach later this year for another “Focus on Nature” workshop at the Clark! Please check www.clarkart.edu/calendar for updates.

 

All images courtesy of Allen Rokach

The Clark Photograph and Clippings Archive contains nearly a million images that were used to teach and study art in the early twentieth century.  Sadly, some of these images represent the only remaining documentation of important works of art. The Lost Art Project draws on the Clark’s photograph and clipping collection to highlight these important lost works.

Today’s lost art work is St. Agnes by Alonso Cano (1601–1667):

St. Agnesis one of approximately 417 works of art from the Kaiser Friedrich Museum that was deposited in the Friedrichshain flak tower, or Flakturm, for safekeeping during the Second World War. The painting is presumed to have been destroyed when the tower was burned in May of 1945.

Click here to learn more.

Where’s My Museum?

By Andrew Davis

Photo by Blake Gardner

With the original museum building closed for renovations, where are my favorite Clark masterpieces? I checked in with curatorial to get the full story. You may find the answers surprising. Come, let’s take a look, shall we?

The Renoirs I love so well have been to Madrid:

And Milan:

And Giverny:

And Barcelona:

And will see quite a few more cities before they return home.

More than one million people have enjoyed the Clark’s collection since these paintings hit the road over a year ago. I hope some of those people come to Williamstown when the collection is reinstalled here in 2014.

It’s all part of ClarkNOW. That’s the snazzy name someone thought up for all the museum programming happening from now until Summer 2014, when the museum building reopens. It’s being renovated now, from top to bottom. It will be bigger and more spacious when it’s done.

There will also be a completely new visitor services building. They’re working on that right now.

ClarkNOW is more than a world tour of paintings. Plenty of things are staying right here in Williamstown. In fact, nearly everything that was in the old museum building is still here at the Clark and on view.

Monet’s Rouen Cathedral? Ugolino’s altarpiece? Homer’s Undertow? They’re all on view now, in the galleries off the main lobby. I just walked over there myself, to be sure.

Photo by Kevin Sprague

There will also be plenty of special exhibitions in the Manton building, and at Stone Hill Center.

Clark Remix, which opened February 12, more than doubled the number of paintings on view in Williamstown. Clark Remix is an utterly different way to enjoy the collection. Think of a salon-style install, and amplify that. There are more paintings per square foot than I’ve ever seen in one place. I don’t know if I can handle it!

Photo by Kevin Sprague

Every single decorative object the Clark displays is shown in a spectacular V-shaped room-within-a-room. That’s hundreds of objects! I have to remind myself to breathe.

Photo by Kevin Sprague

 They’ll be handing out touch screen tablets in case I want to look up info on anything.

Photo by Kevin Sprague

Seeing all this art in a novel way has definitely lit a creative spark, so I’ll be designing my own exhibition with uCurate. I’m excited about this interactive feature. It might be the first of its kind in the world. Anyone can walk up to the screen and arrange digital works from the collection however they like. People can post their exhibitions online, and some of them will actually be chosen to get installed after the museum building reopens! So, if you ever wanted to design exhibitions, here’s your chance. I’ve got a couple ideas…

I’m glad to know ClarkNOW offers plenty to see and do for the next couple years.

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