We basically left off with the Netherlands at war with the Spanish and many of the artists fleeing to the North from what is now Belgium, bringing their styles and skills with them. Initially, this was a form known as mannerism, which focused on the raw beauty of the subject, in an idealised setting. However, in Italy, Caravaggio was starting to make his mark, with a much more realistic feel to his paintings, a more down to Earth, grittier style. As such, this began to filter north to start influencing the Dutch, resulting in a change in style and a movement away from Mannerism.
So, this is the final post on the MoMA’s visit to Melbourne. I probably could have reduced it to two posts, but it is really that there are quite a number of works that I wanted to look at, and explore. The other thing is that the exhibition itself was also quite large, having two major sections at each end of the art gallery. Then again, my understanding is that the MoMA itself is quite large as well. The other interesting thing is that I wonder whether the sections that we were exploring here are the sections as they are laid out in the MoMA itself. Well, maybe, one day, if I ever end up in New York, I’ll find out.
One of the interesting things about the Andy Warhol exhibition that I attended was that they combined it with the art of a more contemporary artist – Ai Wei Wei. Mind you, the main reason that I wanted to go to the exhibition was simply because of Warhol and to be honest I wasn’t really interested in seeing any other artist alongside him. I guess if there was one thing about this exhibition is that Ai Wei Wei seemed to be intruding upon it a little too much. That doesn’t necessarily mean that he isn’t any good – he does have his own interesting style, and he also has some very confronting artwork, however, it wasn’t Ai Wei Wei I went to see, it was Andy Warhol (and if you are interested, here is a link to my post on Warhol).
Since I really can’t decide what works or art to include in my post, and what works not to, I have decided to split this post (though this is something that I seem to do quite regularly when it comes to a lot of these posts on the various exhibitions that I have been to). Anyway, in the previous post we had been following the evolution of art up to the 1920s, but now we move further on, to another style, with one artist we may all be familiar with – Salvador Dali.
Okay, some might object to my title in the belief that John Lennon deserves that claim to fame much more than does Warhol, however considering that the Beatles only hit the scene in 1960 where was Warhol had begun displaying his art in the 1950s he, at least in my humble opinion, is much more deserving. Anyway I have generally found Warhol in the past to be fairly hit or miss with his artwork considering that the only one that I (and probably quite a few of us) are familiar with is his painting of the Campbells soup can. However, when I learnt that an exhibition of his artwork was on display at the NGV (the National Gallery of Victoria) I knew that I had to go and check it out. To say that I was pretty much blown away is probably an understatement. What I can say though is that I seriously underestimated Warhol’s brilliance as an artist.
New York is probably one of the very few places that I really really want to go to in the United States (and I’d say that Vegas is the other, but come to think of it, Vegas would probably be one of those places that I’d drive down the strip once, have a beer at the casino, and then head off to go and see the Hoover Dam). However, due to complications having a slice of New York, in the form the the Museum of Modern Art (otherwise known as the MoMA) coming to Melbourne does temper that urge somewhat, even if it is the case that most of the works here are basically what one would consider Modern Art.
I guess the problem when it comes to the Rijksmuseum is that I didn’t actually walk through it in any particular order, and never really noticed whether there was any particular order until long after I left. However, I should mention that the museum itself is huge. Well, not quite as big as the Louvre (which happens to be the biggest museum in the world) but it is still pretty massive. We didn’t actually get to explore all of the Rijksmuseum either, though I’d say that we saw about 90% of the place, and the rest of the 10% we simply rushed through trying to find the way to get to where we wanted to go.
Look, I’m probably not going to suggest that this is the largest art gallery in Australia, but it is certainly larger than the Art Gallery of New South Wales (or at least has a much larger collection) and this is only the international collection (I believe the Australian art is located elsewhere). The other thing that stands out is that the NGV is not a traditional art gallery.
There is a certain building in Sydney that everybody visits, usually so they can get a photo of themselves standing in front of it, and even though I had an appointment at that particular building during my stay in Sydney, since it is an Australian icon I feel that I would simply be wasting my time saying anything about it because, well, everybody knows about it anyway. So, instead of going to that building, I decided that I would go and pay a visit to the Museum of Contemporary Art.
While most people travel to Bendigo for the quaint country atmosphere, the farmer’s market, the abundance of curio shops, or simply to go for a ride on the talking tram, I went to see the art gallery.