Wednesday, August 19, 2009
"The Aesthetic Possibility of Killing Something When It's Already Dead" or "Brain. Still In A Motherfucking Vat".
What is it about Damien Hirst's The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living that makes the staff at the Met--a seemingly intelligent group of people--so blindingly stupid? Is the formaldehyde leaking? Are all the thoughts about the physical impossibility of death snapping their synapses like gift shop cinnamon sticks? I don't understand it. I just know it hurts to see the results, again and again and (sigh) again.
I've never been more unhappy to have my camera battery run out, but that's how it went down on Saturday when I went to the museum. What you see above is a slap-dash Photoshop rendering (You're going to have to work with me here.) of what I saw when I turned the corner to enter the room that holds the shark. Inspiring sight, right? Yep. They've posted a "NO PHOTOS" sign stand about 1.5 feet in front of the piece. Similar signs posted on the wall around the sculpture are distracting, but the stand is just downright obstructive, crushing any possibility of finding the heart of the piece.
Last time around, I implored the Met to respect the art, to let it bite its audience with its own teeth. At this point, I'd just be happy if they sent it back to Stamford and let it rot, gums and all.