Monday, September 16, 2013

Working as a gallery attendant at an art museum, you come across people from all walks of life, each with their own stories, and each with their own opinions about the art. Some pass by a piece of art, glancing at it briefly, while others focus in on that same piece, stopped in their tracks, fascinated by the story it’s telling them. And every once in a while, a piece of art that may not always get that much attention suddenly becomes a major point of conversation among our visitors.

Such was the case this week at the Art Museum. The untitled piece by local artist Michael Goodlett created a spark of interest in many visitors since the small sculpture is hauntingly similar to the unforgettable images of 9/11. The surprise—this sculpture was created in 1999, a full two years before the attacks, a fact that most of our visitors are surprised by.

This brings up the age-old question: does art imitate life or life imitate art? To this debated question, I’m sure there will never be a definite answer. One thing is sure though—all art tells a story. It captures human essence, telling the story of those who have come before us and the ways of the world during their time. Life changes. People change. And although art may change, it is always there, a constant reminder of human history, giving brief glimpses into a story that’s not our own.

Nothing does this better than our current exhibition The Golden Age of Painting in Europe. I strongly encourage you to visit the Museum and see it before it leaves next Monday on September 23. Come take a peek at history! See and read their stories. Better yet, pick up a pen or paintbrush and create your own. After all, we might not be permanent fixtures in this world, but isn’t it awesome to think that people 400 years from now might be looking at something that you created?

Michaela Miles, gallery attendant and gift shop coordinator

Image credit: MICHAEL GOODLETT, Untitled, 1999, carved wood with ink and pencil Gift of Louis Zoeller Bickett II in honor of Jon Bales

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