Nov 6, 2010

Reflections at the Met

Spending time at The Metropolitan Museum of Art always unearths some welcome surprises.  It is impossible to turn a corner or step into the next room without stumbling upon a new discovery.  As many times as I've visited it remains fresh and unexpected. Both the ancient and the contemporary reveal themselves anew. On my quick stop there last week I came across recent finds, works by Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian and Anish Kapoor, that offered seductively vibrant visual experiences in a Minimalist format.  Viewers and passers-by created restlessly fluctuating ripples within the hundreds of mirrors making up the surface of each piece. Walking by and watching reflections of others doing the same called to mind Picasso and Braque's Cubist paintings, David Hockney's photomontages, Oliver Herring's collaged c-print  figures and Megumi Naitoh's complex Real Life/Virtual Life printed ceramic wall reliefs. 

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, Flight of the Dolphin, 2010 Mirror mosaic, reverse glass painting, traditional glue and plaster on wood

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, Flight of the Dolphin (detail)

Born in Iran in 1924, Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian’s career has spanned more than five decades. Incorporating traditional reverse glass painting, mirror mosaics, and principles of Islamic Geometry with a modern sensibility, her sculptures and installations defy easy categorization. She studied at Cornell University and Parsons School for Design in New York in the 1940s, where she befriended many of her contemporaries, such as Louise Nevelson, Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollock and, later, Frank Stella. Farmanfarmaian’s work has been exhibited widely in galleries and museums across the Middle East and internationally. She is represented by The Third Line, Dubai. the same gallery room one of my long time favorites, Anish Kapoor!
I wish i could've captured more images of people looking into this mesmerizing piece but it really was most effective when standing directly in front of it. I love that it is called 'As Yet Untitled' since as the viewers changed it offered up a unique self-portrait of each spectator/participant.  

Check out my brief video: 

For those unfamiliar with Anish Kapoor's work check out his beautiful website: 

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