Antidote to Moderna Museet needed

Posted: October 4, 2011 in Events
Tags: , , , , ,

Claude Monet--Water Lilies, after 1916:© Musée Marmottan Monet, Paris / The Bridgeman Art Library

Last week I received an invitation to a preview of a new exhibit of the work of three artists: Turner, Monet and Twombly. This causes me to feel an itchy irritation, a kind of vague anxiety.

The unopened envelope containing the invitation rests downstairs on top of a bureau adjacent to my front door. And now I’ve received several e-mail reminders.

I love the work of Turner, can appreciate Monet and should probably give this less well-known Twomby a chance to reveal his brilliance. The problem is my chronic antipathy to the Moderna Museet. I’ve been disappointed too many times.

The Moderna Museet has for more years than I care to remember failed to impress, failed to surprise, and failed to provoke any sensation in me stronger than tired feet. Their moldy (there is an embarassing history of fungus in the walls) exhibits focus upon the most celebrated artists of the 20th century: Picasso, van Gogh, Warhol, Duchamp, Dali, Rauchenberg and their like: all were considered radical and revolutionary a half century ago but have since been certified as “important” and worthy.

The impending exhibition, which will remain open until January 15, will doubtlessly attract tassles of school classes and fans of “golden oldies.” But it inspires in me only a weary sense of resignation. I need some kind of of pill or tonic which will magically rekindle my enthusiasm for artists I’ve seen five or ten times before.

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