A few weeks ago, I visited the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SF MOMA). It was a fun day in the city that started with enjoying brunch at a local hot spot in that neighborhood. After filling our tummies with some yummies, we headed to the museum. Trips to the modern art museums are always an experience. Every time I visit, there’s some cool new stuff to observe and appreciate. This time one of the highlights was the wine exhibit. I moved along from the wine room to the B&W photo room as I progressed through the different exhibits. It was all inspiring, but not nearly as inspiring as what I saw next.
I went from photo to photo, taking time to just absorb the art, appreciate it and understand it, the artists motivation. Every picture left me with so much appreciation for every day things that are full of beauty but we so easily pass them by without taking a moment to appreciate that what surrounds us. So, as I am moving along I see this blind gentleman who is standing in front of one of the photo arts and listening to his companion describing the art. I was in complete awe of this person.
A few thoughts came to mind:
- Even though he is blind, it does not stop him living life, actually, enjoying life just like I do
- He does not let his disability stop him from enjoying art, which a lot of us think that can only be appreciated by a working pair of eyes. Whether you need imagination or intelligence or a connection doesn’t even cross our minds if that processing resource is not accompanied or fed to by eyesight.
- Even though the words describing the art came from another person, he had his imagination to visualize and appreciate it.
I have always thought that appreciation for art should not come from eyes, but the mind or maybe even the heart, if one best wants to understand and view any art from its creators perspective. But seeing this blind man enjoying art touched me like never before.
So with that, just wanted to get this thought-provoking question out there:
What do you need to really “see” any art to enjoy it, appreciate it??
On a related note, the book I am reading right now talks about how criticism is the lowest form of appreciating art. That statement may sound simple, but I think the author is trying to say that maybe art criticism needs to be redefined?
Here are some pictures from my trip to SF MOMA: