Let the museum handle security or make everyone use the signboard, jerkoff.
I badly wanted to run my fingers along the giant Assyrian carvings I saw at the British Museum in the 90s...in fact, I did surreptitiously touch them with one fingertip because there was no barrier preventing it.
People react viscerally to the building, which was designed to fit on an oddly shaped plot of land. There's one particularly sharp corner that has attracted a lot of attention. Over the years, so many people have felt the urge to touch the corner that the lavender-pink marble has developed a dark stain just below shoulder height where countless hands have deposited their oils.
While critics have hailed the East Building of the National Gallery of Art as “one of the great architectural draws of its time” and “an enormously successful place for seeing art,” not once have the accolades been followed with “and it begs to be touched.” Yet near the Fourth Street entrance, an engraving done for the building’s dedication has been rubbed repeatedly to the point that a dark haze has accumulated over the name of the building’s architect, I.M. Pei.
In a world that seems largely dematerialised by a wide range of digital developments, these artists work to arrive at new sculptural approaches to ‘the object’. Each of them asks the question: ‘what is an object, and how can we know it?’ The creation process plays a key role in their work, and specifically in the exploration of this question. The choice of materials holds a special significance for these artists. For example, organic materials such as animal brains and wood, and minerals like semiprecious stones and copper, are used for their ‘magical’ aura. The works are not just a concrete form, but acquire a meaning that transcends their appearance. These artists manage to breathe new life into the Modernist notion of the aura of the artwork.
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