Sunday, May 24, 2009
art and (its Bucharest) democratization
for some years in Bucharest there has been a night of museums when every citizen can visit the museums of his town for free. I went again this year (after having missed one year) to 3 museums. At the first one, the museum of national art (MNAR) the exposition we wanted to see (photos done by Magritte) was not open for the nocturne public. The second museum, the Museum of Bucharest was impossible to see as a crowd (literally) had entered the premises and suffocated there. Summer has come to stay in our beautiful city and the air was missing in the Sutu Palace. The third and last attempt to see some "free art" was at the oh so controversy ridden Museum of contemporary art hosted by the House of the People. There we stood for almost 1h and a half in a line waiting to get in. Staying in line for an art exhibition beats any line. right? well not in practice. The question that came to my mind after this triple attempt to enjoy a night at the museums and saw so very different people entering these spaces as they enter stadiums with no reverence what so ever was: is democratization of art such a good thing? Knowing how museums were exactly imagined as places meant to open up a closed space to the grand public, to the people, posing this question might appear strange. I wonder if confronting art can have the effects one expects when opening the doors of art to the grand public. My conclusion that hot Saturday night was negative.