Friday, June 24, 2005

Opening : Visual Music

Lovely interactive site for the exhibit here.

Despite the threat of a thunderstorm the opening was lovely. Openings at the Hirshhorn are a special treat when the weather cooperates and they can be held outside in the plaza. Ambient music played in the background to set the mood and there were blocks of colored light scattered around the space. The rosepetal martinis were a hit - not too flowery, not too sweet - the perfect drink on a summer evening. One of the artists - John Whitney Jr., I think - wore a tall black top hat lit up with flashing shapes much like those in his family's films.

There was a palpable energy in the exhibit. I have to go through again to really grasp it, but on first viewing I was taken by surprise by the freshness of the first room of paintings (on walls painted a light blue, a welcome alternative to the regular white walled gallery). The films by the Whitney family caught my attention but I didn't have the time to really absorb them.

Because so much of the exhibit is made up of time-based media it requires your attention. You have to give the pieces time to sink under your skin, to absorb the flow of the artist's vision.

More later.

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