Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Better than Art

I visited the Centre Georges Pompidou today. Only the permanent collection was open. There are plenty of modern hits by everyone from Rothko to Matisse, but I just seemed to glide bleary-eyed through the galleries. It was very hard to see it all fresh. It’s all too familiar. Perhaps with better lighting and more interesting juxtapositions, I would have appreciated it more. But, one this is for certain, Giacometti looks great. His paintings have the rawness of drawings and his sculptures are alive.

The most popular pieces seemed to be op art ones, involving illusion, and a certain element of design. This got me thinking. There’s something about Paris, I’m more interested in graphic design, object design, and commercials on television than “fine” or “contemporary” art. The museum, for example, has fantastic signs. One reading SORTIE was made of small bulbs, like a marquee, but the size and font were smaller, tighter. Then, one block from the museum, I was in awe by resin ice cube earrings slightly twisted and tinted subtle colors. Walking home, I stood before a French version of a bonsai tree that involved an enormous chiseled-like trunk, reminiscent of a palm tree, up top of which were just a few shoots of unusual leaves. The everyday here is what catches my eye and sticks in my head.

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