Everybody’s an Art Curator
As more art institutions outsource exhibits to the crowd, is it time to rethink the role of the museum?
by Ellen Gamerman, Wall Street Journal, Updated Oct. 23, 2014
by Ellen Gamerman, Wall Street Journal, Updated Oct. 23, 2014
Understanding that art is an important, and vital part of our culture and history, I find it commendable that museums are looking for new and creative ways to get the general public interested in art again. That being said, while I like the idea of crowdsourcing exhibit curation (like the first example of 30 out of 50 predetermined pieces chosen for exhibition), I begin to lose sight of the cultural advantages of having people bring in their personal art for exhibition, other than generating money for the museums themselves. While this sort of thing may renew an interest in art in those who have since lost it, I believe that kind of interest is only temporary, and more based off of the desire of people wanting to see their own “refrigerator art” hanging on museum walls.
I begin to lose appreciation for art as the new exhibits begin to be brought into the museums. Artists make a living painting/making art and selling them to museums and bidders. The fact that museums have started to take other art from younger kids or not professional artists seemed absurd. This i think will take formally from peoples appreciation of art and museums, it seems bad fro business.
I personally like the fact that children’s works are being shown at these museums because it gives not only a new perspective on art but it also shows the change in style and of course professionalism which is in fact history. When looking at a child’s work of an animal for example and then having an older persons art right next to it tells a story of what life teaches you. A single lifespan is history and these young artists and older experienced artists create a parallel between their works that is brilliant. How much has the artist learned since being a child? What does the child do that the experienced artist do? It would be fascinating to see these comparisons and I think it’s a great idea.
This is an interesting direction that the museums are taking that I have never heard happen before. I like that they are presenting options that allow for community members of all ages to get more involved. I think that this will allow for people to be able to make more connections with the pieces being displayed, especially if they know the artists personally. However, I am unsure as to how I feel about pieces done by professional artists being displayed with a child’s art. While it is always so interesting to see the progression of someone’s artistic abilities as they age, I think it might insult the artists because it takes away from their work.
I think this is an interesting idea but I can see how critics are concerned that there could be a loss of professional opinion and artistic vision for the works. I like the idea of having public vote on a selection more than the idea of having a sort of “free for all” with children’s artwork, however this could work in the right place–but again I think a curator’s eye would be necessary to create a pleasing combination of works. This idea does help make the community feel more involved, but I think curator’s are important to make the works flow and work together to show an idea or feeling.
After listening to this story my initial thought was if museums were losing interest from artists so they just let the average joe put their painting up. But after thinking about it for a little the idea kinda grew on me. It is a smart way to try and get a community involved in art. They have to go vote on pieces from an average artist and try to see what they were trying to convey with their piece. I just simply think it is an interesting and different way to try and get more and more people interested in art. Also, I think it is smart to vote on pieces to cut down the total amount they display because that can get rid of the pieces that might bring criticisms to this whole idea of letting average people display their art.
This new idea of marketing local artist in museums is a fantastic idea, for museums have many exhibits. Due to the popular stereotype that all museums are boring this technique brings a refreshing twist to an industry that is struggling for funding. The idea to involve the community to bring in more foot traffic is a great idea, for more foot traffic leads to higher quantities of donations which can save museums. The initial draw to see how your local artist compares to the greats will certainly bring myself to museums, for the perspective that can be traced over time by observing the greats, and can be potentially linked to thoughts and expressions that I feel due to geographic similarities that the local artist and I have in common.
I think that this is an interesting take on museums. I like how it allows all types of people of all ages to get involved in art. I also like how it creates a possibility for young children to start being interested in art. The only problem that I see with this is that professional artists may not want to send their works to the museum since it may be compared with works done by children. Which could lead to the museum being filled with only works done by recreational artists.
While I applaud the effort to bring in new crowds to these exhibits and museums, I think the concept of allowing anyone to submit work, diminishes the work that artists have been working for their entire lives. Some people have a natural talent for art and I do not mean to say that they should not be able to share their works, of course they should, but the video references the concept of bringing in a drawing your child did, that seems to make professional artists’s work seem disingenuous upon the wall of a prestigious gallery. That being said I understand museums are falling by the wayside in the modern world, and while they should continue to do their best to bring in new crowds, I don’t believe this is the right way to do it.
I feel that art should be shared by the whole and not just by people of means or status. Artwork is always evolving and always has a story to tell, I feel that no matter the artist or artworks we should have open opinions and embrace the expression an artist is portraying. Should we get away from museums, in my opinion I think not. Museums are a portal to the past linking us with our ancestors through pieces of art and artifacts. Without museums we would not be able to have access to this history. Outsourcing exhibits to the crowd shouldn’t be frowned upon, it should be embraced. By outsourcing exhibits this is keeping artwork or the establishments outsourcing these items relevant in today’s technology driven society. Most people say I can see this art on Google or Bing etc., which means they may be detached to simple things such as artwork. By getting these artworks out their museums are putting a fresh spin on how to view these artworks without stepping a foot into museums, doing so may bring money through donations back to the museums to keep them in business to continue to connect us with our past.
I personally think this is a wonderful idea! It is one of the most creative and imaginative ways to get people talking and paying attention to art. Art appreciators feel involved, it gets them to really look at the art, and crowds and funds increase in the process. I don’t believe that curators are giving up their artistic control as they have complete control over what the observers pick from. Finally, involving children’s art work with great artist inspire young people to follow their dreams. This was quite an uplifting segment.
I think artwork is important because it is a way to demonstrate the creator’s story. Artists come from all backgrounds, races, ethnicities, genders, and ages. That being said, I think art wouldn’t provide as much social commentary as it does if it just came from one select group of people. It’s important to broaden horizons and allow many different people to create. I personally love the idea that anyone can submit art to a museum and have it be looked at.
Art is a product of people, so why not let people in on the excitement of curating? I understand both sides of the argument here. As a Historic Preservation major with some background in museum studies, I can see why curators would be hesitant to leave their job up to people with little to no training in museums or curation. In Museum Education, we learn that the curators are experts on the objects and artworks themselves, but interpretation is ultimately left up to the educators and the visitors. People come to museums for learning and experiencing. Allowing the public to have a direct role in the learning experiences of themselves and other people is something to be encouraged!
While it is an interesting concept, I believe that it should be temporary or occasional event meant to draw people back into the art community. If this continues for to long the interest will dwindle as people will just want to see their art up and not the whole community’s. People may begin to devalue the art seeing as they will let anyone’s art be displayed or they may use the system for truly selfish reasons. Therefore museums should limit their outsourcing or risk losing the people’s interest.
This video was really interesting. To have your work up in a museum is such a important moment for an artist. But not everyone could get a degree in the arts to be able to have their work on a wall so to have an opportunity for people to be able to have their artwork on the wall is such a cool thing. The video also said they let little kids have their artwork on the wall. That would be so awesome and something those people would never forget.