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Philadelphia Art Museum Experience - Research Paper Example

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That is because it is the first Sunday of the month. On the first Sunday of every month at the Philadelphia Art Museum, admission is rendered essentially free with the policy of “pay what you wish”. Almost…
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Philadelphia Art Museum Experience
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In Depth Evaluation of the Philadelphia Art Museum [YOUR FULL [YOUR PROF [YOUR [YOUR SCHOOL 13 December In Depth Evaluation of the Philadelphia Art Museum
The early morning excitement is palpable on December 04, 2011. That is because it is the first Sunday of the month. On the first Sunday of every month at the Philadelphia Art Museum, admission is rendered essentially free with the policy of “pay what you wish”. Almost everyone tosses in a dollar, or more if they feel that is fair. Thanks to the inexpensive nature of the promotion, those waiting in line at 9:30am for admission to start at 10:00am are demographically from all walks of life. students, families, or tours, the one thing everyone has in common is that they all want to make the most of their 7 hour window until the museum closes at 5:00pm (philamuseum.org, 2011).
Once you have battled the line in, the first thing that strikes you immediately upon entering the main foyer is the beautiful statue of Diana reflecting majestically off of the highly polished sweeping marble staircases that lead to the many wings of the museum. Classical influence is clearly obvious in the aesthetic feel, but Diana’s long, lean physique and athletic build mark her as a creation of a more modern age. Augustus Saint-Gauden fashioned “Diana” out of copper sheets in 1894. Originally, the goddess was gilded, and wore draperies that floated on the wind. She was the highest point in New York City, when she served her original purpose as the weathervane of the second Madison Square Garden building in New York City. The first NYC statue to be lit by electricity at night, “Diana” was a city landmark until 1925, when the structure was demolished, and the sculpture acquired by the Philadelphia Art Museum. (Saint-Gaudens, 1894)
When which artworks I would like to focus on, at first it seemed rather difficult. Art, by its very nature, is subject in evaluation to individual preference. The core of individual preference is that which you think is good. Since what you think is good is automatically going to be whatever it is you like, and conversely, whatever you like will automatically be deemed by you to be “Good Art”. Since “Good Art” is inherently subject to the lens of individual preference, and what a person prefers will automatically be that which they enjoy, then consequently “Good Art” will always lean inherently toward things that will be in line with your personal preferences. Since the definition of “Good Art” is to be accepted as something that you like, and would likely enjoy owning as a result, if the Philadelphia Art Museum were my personal IKEA, these are the items that I would like to take home. It is because I like them, that I subjectively can deem them “Good Art” by the only standard that can be measured, personal preference.
Nothing can compare to the sweeping sense of time that washes over you when you walk into the “Pillared Temple Hall” from Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India. Impossibly detailed heavy granite columns depict scenes from Indian mythology, and were completed by expert hands in 1550. The Philadelphia Art Museum is capable of transporting the imagination through ruins and relics, and they can immerse us in diverse cultures from all over time and place by the exhibition of a comprehensive variety of collections. But never forget that the Philadelphia Art Museum is a historical wonderland second, and an art museum first. This is made especially apparent when viewing the French oil on canvas, “Portrait of Mrs. Bloomfield Moore”. In this feast for the senses, painted by Adolphe Weisz in 1877, the regal and self-assured Mrs. Bloomfield Moore indulges the onlooker with a favored glance. Projecting an air of easy sophistication, she exudes the effortless opulence of the extremely wealthy. She is laden with lovely sumptuaries, and dripping pearls like a hive drips honey. When evaluating the wide variety of artwork types that are displayed by the Philadelphia Art Museum, it is possible to begin asking oneself the sorts of questions that apply not only to the works at hand, but about the field of art itself as well. Why does a society need art?
From a purely intellectual perspective, the appreciation of art is a fine conversation stimulus that allows us to express our viewpoints and get to know our fellow people just a bit better. Also, the challenge of the thorough evaluation artwork within culturally understood standards can help those who are interested better understand their own heritage, as well as the rich diversity offered by other cultures as well. Not to mention the fact that intelligently crafted works of art that express precisely what they mean to, and in the way they intended to, is the truest pinnacle of “Good Art”, and it is as rare as it is deeply affecting.
From a theological standpoint, a society ought to worship not only through prayer and faith, but through the creation of beautiful works of religiously themed art as well. Communities can often rally around a single religiously themed artwork that is of local origin as a common bonding experience, and also position the artwork in question to be a source of income generation through faith-based tourism. When cultural reasons are of concern, religiously themed art often brings with it a great sense of the divine being intrinsically folded into the culture, as in the case of a person who would identify themselves as an ‘Irish Catholic’. If the platform of religiously themed art is used to foster greater artistic expression, using reserves of collected money to easily purchase elaborate works of art, giving money to an artist who could certainly benefit from a steady paying faith-based project or two.
Concerning the politics, legislators require works of art from time to time, because without them, there would be no campaign posters, slick speeches, or heavy-handed commercials paid for by the candidate, who of course, wholeheartedly approves of his own message. And let us not forget that which some would call an art unto itself: the art of spin, or information management. Socially, politics reaps benefits from a relationship with art because art can often sand off the harsher edges of politics and transform it into something more palatable to the masses. And at the intersection of politics and culture, we find that art has a defining role in establishing details a culture or ethnicity, details that can be absorbed and worn as a badge of membership or appreciation concerning any number of cultures.
So with that in mind, what role does art play in society from a purely socio-economic perspective? When considering what is likely to happen to an established social structure when exposed to an influx of investable capital, from a purely social perspective, we see the creation of an elite craftsman class, well paid for their skills, and certain to spend money back into the community. From a cultural perspective, the creation of this highly compensated elite craftsman class could lead to a redefinition of the previously accepted social roles and responsibilities attributed to a craftsman, and perhaps a monetary imbalance when considering the established economic realities of those roles. If the goal of art is to be thought to have provided the highest possible offering of artistic expression, when existing socio-economic realities allow an increase in the quantity of available funds with which to create good art, it is possible to exceed personal and even perhaps societal standards and expectations. This is especially true if craftsmen were not previously held in high regard, or if the increased personal income of the craftsman class breaks the currently acceptable socio-economic realities.
The Philadelphia Art Museum truly has the variety within their collections and the qualtity of exhibited artists. It is an excellent place to go in order to learn new things about previously viewed artists, or to learn the history and cultural signifigance of artworks recently discovered or long enjoyed.
Selected Works from the Philadelphia Art Museum
“Pillared Temple Hall”
“Portrait of Mrs. Bloomfield Moore”
References
Philadelphia Art Museum. (2011). Entire site. Retrieved from http://www.philamuseum.org/
Saint-Gaudens Augustus. (1894). “Diana”
Philadelphia Art Museum, American Art. USA. Copper sheets.
Retrieved from http://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/44513.html
Philadelphia Art Museum. (1550). “Pillared Temple Hall”
Indian and Himalayan Art. Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India. Granitic stone
Retrieved from http://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/40202.html
Weisz, Adolphe. (1877). “Portrait of Mrs. Bloomfield Moore”
Philadelphia Art Museum, European Painting before 1900. France. Oil on canvas
Retrieved from http://www.philamuseum.org/collections/permanent/38233.html Read More
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