Art cannot be fully experienced without our cooperation
December 26, 2018 3:50 PM   Subscribe

 
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posted by Faint of Butt at 3:51 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by jim in austin at 4:12 PM on December 26, 2018


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I like to brain-whiplash art appreciation students by having them try to deal with Andre Serrano's Piss Christ, and then have them watch her response to the thing, which was not what they expected.
posted by Capybara at 4:13 PM on December 26, 2018 [23 favorites]


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I liked her verdict on Picasso. She had great reverence for his skill but didn't particularly "like" his work. Not a position endearing her among art critics and professors. Liking/disliking artists is beside the point, these days.
posted by kozad at 4:17 PM on December 26, 2018 [6 favorites]


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posted by XMLicious at 4:19 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by lalochezia at 4:26 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by obliquity of the ecliptic at 4:28 PM on December 26, 2018


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Sister Wendy had a HUGE impact on me as a kid. I’d say, “She will be missed,” but I’ve been missing her for twenty years.
posted by Sys Rq at 4:28 PM on December 26, 2018 [6 favorites]


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posted by bird internet at 4:32 PM on December 26, 2018


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She had a wonderful spirit, a quick mind, and a generous, inquisitive thirst for all that humanity asked and said through art. I’m so glad we have her books and programs to enjoy.
posted by missmary6 at 4:45 PM on December 26, 2018 [13 favorites]


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posted by Melismata at 4:57 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by Gray Duck at 5:07 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by HandfulOfDust at 5:11 PM on December 26, 2018


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Sister Wendy was one of those household names whose appeal trancended a lot of social boundaries and, to this Australian, that appeal seemed a great example of the better side of Britishness.
posted by Lesser Spotted Potoroo at 5:11 PM on December 26, 2018 [3 favorites]


Gah! Learned so much from her.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 5:46 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by evilDoug at 6:05 PM on December 26, 2018


Her Desert Island Discs interview is good.
posted by pracowity at 6:28 PM on December 26, 2018


I loved her series and recommended it so often, especially when someone went off on an ironic / smug dismissal of modern non-representational art. Because that's who I was when I first started watching her pieces. She taught me to appreciate Agnes Martin at a time when I would have said that wasn't possible. So much joy in her.
posted by Mchelly at 6:35 PM on December 26, 2018 [4 favorites]


Art is what happens between what you hang on the wall, and the way that you experience what you hang on the wall. Kaban bless you on your onward journeys, Sister Wendy.

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posted by sourcequench at 6:35 PM on December 26, 2018 [1 favorite]


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I'll never forget her describing the pubic hair in a nude painting as "so wonderfully fluffy".
posted by drnick at 6:41 PM on December 26, 2018 [14 favorites]


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posted by Thorzdad at 6:42 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by tommasz at 6:48 PM on December 26, 2018


Oh no, this has hit me unexpectedly hard. She spoke in such a personable way, to and about the art. It was always so fantastic that a nun was so good at humanizing spiritual things.
posted by Mizu at 7:15 PM on December 26, 2018 [3 favorites]


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I never saw her show but looking at some of the clips being posted I can see I've missed out.

She taught me to appreciate Agnes Martin at a time when I would have said that wasn't possible. So much joy in her.

Looking for the video, because Agnes Martin is the kind of artist I really struggle with.
posted by bunderful at 7:20 PM on December 26, 2018


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90% of my art appreciation knowledge came from Sister Wendy, even though my wife and I only watched her show because we found it kind of funny...
posted by mmoncur at 7:41 PM on December 26, 2018


If you're interested in her, find BBC Arena "Sister Wendy and the Art of the Gospel" (2012), which says she read English at Oxford, where the president of her examining board, J.R.R. Tolkien, told her she had graduated with 'the highest marks ever'.
posted by pracowity at 7:52 PM on December 26, 2018 [15 favorites]


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posted by ducky l'orange at 7:58 PM on December 26, 2018


She taught me to trust my feelings when I was viewing art. The first thing I ever watched her critique was Degas' Little Dancer. She saw right through him to the jaw dropping misogyny and didn't flinch.
posted by xammerboy at 9:27 PM on December 26, 2018 [15 favorites]


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posted by emmet at 9:27 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by no mind at 9:34 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by Halloween Jack at 9:59 PM on December 26, 2018


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posted by condour75 at 4:32 AM on December 27, 2018


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posted by Orange Dinosaur Slide at 5:36 AM on December 27, 2018


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posted by gauche at 6:10 AM on December 27, 2018


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May her memory be a blessing.
posted by Sophie1 at 6:22 AM on December 27, 2018


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posted by viramamunivar at 6:50 AM on December 27, 2018


We watched some of her material in high school English class. Our teacher loved her; we thought she was strange. Then our teacher showed us an SNL version of her and unfortunately that's the picture that stuck with me. I hadn't thought of her for years but now I will have to revisit her.
posted by Emmy Rae at 7:22 AM on December 27, 2018


I've never seen the show, but my undergrad degree in art history and enduring love of tramping around museums is pretty much entirely the result of her book Sister Wendy's 1000 Masterpieces, which I read obsessively as a young teenager.

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posted by LadyNibbler at 7:49 AM on December 27, 2018 [2 favorites]


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posted by Cash4Lead at 8:03 AM on December 27, 2018


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posted by camyram at 9:13 AM on December 27, 2018


I like to brain-whiplash art appreciation students by having them try to deal with Andre Serrano's Piss Christ

Oh wow. Thanks for posting that, capybara. Watching her discuss Piss Christ with Bill Moyers is oddly gladdening. It kinda tells you who the real Christians are.

Someone I volunteered with in the early 2000s turned me on to Sister Wendy, and IIRC my first exposure to her was "Complete Collection" that I got a hold of through my public library.

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posted by mandolin conspiracy at 1:05 PM on December 27, 2018


Here’s a nice, short Twitter thread with some good quotes from Sister Wendy, of which I think my favourite is this - on the difficulty of educating yourself about art, while preserving your own taste:

"We should listen to the appreciations of others, but then we should put them aside and advance toward a work of art in the loneliness of our own truth."

The loneliness of our own truth.
posted by penguin pie at 3:28 PM on December 27, 2018 [9 favorites]


PBS was showing a lot of Sister Wendy during a lonely time for me in grad school. I found her wonderfully soothing and also inspiring--that I should take time out and decide for myself what I appreciated in art. RIP and thanks, Sister Wendy.
posted by TwoStride at 7:03 PM on December 27, 2018 [2 favorites]


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posted by sfred at 8:25 PM on December 27, 2018


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posted by Pouteria at 12:08 AM on December 28, 2018


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posted by koucha at 7:03 AM on December 28, 2018


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posted by LeftMyHeartInSanFrancisco at 4:35 PM on December 29, 2018


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