A visit to the art gallery…

12 Sep


Subdued whispers. Voiced opinions. Silently shuffling. Pausing every few steps. Staring. Gazing. Getting lost – not physically, but instead getting lost in the metaphysical. Blurring boundaries between imagination and reality.  No control of where your imagination may venture to next.  Colours. Lines. Textures. Each element constitutes a whole. Each element a dormant catalyst – you never know what it might activate within you– a physical facial expression, a long-forgotten memory, a potent emotion.

Art Galleries. Visiting one is like stepping into a vortex. The art gallery space has a universal vibe. On the outset art galleries are physically predictable – paintings on walls, sculptures on floors, people politely wandering, tour guides excitedly proving insight. Yet, beyond the basic structure and social etiquette, lies the unfamiliar. On the surface it just seems like people viewing art, however, those who have been to an art gallery know how much deeper this actually goes. Each piece of art has the power to take you on an imaginative journey. A journey with no predefined destination. It is not like reading a book. Or watching a movie. There is no fixed ending. How your mind makes sense of a piece of art, is dependent on a culmination of your own logic, rationality, creativity and past experiences. How you perceive a piece of art is important, because whilst someone else has created it – it is ultimately a reflection of your inner self.

An art gallery pulsates. An art gallery breathes. An art gallery lives. Certain pieces of art live on in your mind. Even when your consciousness has put them to sleep, your subconsciousness keeps them awake.

I visited the ‘Mad Square’ Berline exhibition (Weimar Period 1919-1933) last week. I went there by myself. People might find that weird. But I found it incredibly meditative. I could take my time. I could take in each piece without interruption. I honestly had such a good time. The lighting, the humidity, the temperature of an art gallery – all so controlled, seemingly contradicts the chaos that runs through your mind whilst viewing art.

Being myself, meant that I could focus deeply on my own reaction to certain pieces. Whilst  I was in there – my mind quietened. My breath slowed. I immediately realised how powerful this space was. No wonder art has stitched itself into the material that makes up human culture. No wonder art galleries are so highly valued all over the world for centuries and centuries.

You forget the world outside. Art galleries demand total focus. Fragmented thoughts of daily life, suddenly are put into perspective. Upon viewing art, your view becomes myopic.

Art galleries. Powerful places. Powerful spaces.


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