joy magnetism: Abstracts of visual vocabulary

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Saturday, December 19, 2009

Abstracts of visual vocabulary

Magnet #666 - Georgia O'Keeffe quote

This Georgia O'Keeffe quote magnet is one of that supercool artists quote set that I picked up from the Met earlier this year. It's a photograph of her taken by the love of her life, Alfred Stieglitz (yes, this time it's really by him) - which I saw in person today! Very cool.

I hung out with DCsister's godmother today, running around the Upper East Side, taking in the Kandinsky exhibit at the Guggenheim, a French lunch at Demarchelier, the O'Keeffe exhibit at the Whitney, and a Rooster at Vosges. Fun day!

I know - I keep going to museum after museum, and there hasn't been an exhibition I haven't really enjoyed. But honestly, if you're good enough for me to recognize your work on sight, to see it in multiple galleries around the world, and you're truly masters of art, then, really, who the heck am I not to like it.

Who doesn't love learning more about the art and the artists, and seeing the master works of art in person. Even though I have magnet after magnet of these great works, there's nothing quite like giving security guards palpitations by sticking your nose five inches away from the canvas to investigate the brushstrokes, and dodging your head around other people's heads, standing five feet away to begin grasping the gestalt of each artists' visual vocabulary.

Yeah, that's right. Today I learned the term visual vocabulary - both the audio tour at the Gugg and the tour guide at the Whitney mentioned it. I won't lie - I'm completely untrained artwise, no classes, no seminars - so hearing the term visual vocabulary was new for me. For Kandinsky, it's his horses and geometric shapes. For O'Keeffe, it's her multifaceted layers of color and bold, sweeping shapes.

Today, Georgia's art - and the tour guide - made a lot more unknown known to me today - wandering around, I learned more about O'Keeffe's art, her life, her relationship with Alfred Stieglitz and her relationship with the public and their relationship to her art. If you get the chance, check out the guided tour of the exhibition - you get more out of that than the audio tour (something I rarely say).

Although, I don't mind saying, they have these superfun O'Keeffe toolboxes for kids to carry around, with crayons and flowers and a drawing notebooks. I would have rather plopped down and grab one of those toolboxes out of the cute kids' hands and start drawing - though my art of smiley faced suns and grassy with rainbows would be a far cry from Georgia's work hanging up on the Whitney walls.
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