Monday, December 10, 2007

"Three Gems" by James Turrell

My sister told me only that we needed to wait a minute. A group of kids ran towards and past us and we walked down a path and around a bullet shaped structure through a rose colored outdoor hallway to the entry door into the space. It could be a rocket ship capsule, the earth visible as the round stone set in the center of the floor, our destination somewhere out the view hole above us as we sat on the concrete bench built into most of the circumference. It was instantly a peaceful enclosure. We sat and breathed deeply, leaning back. When I started speaking I discovered the sonic quality - the undertones of my voice rang around us as though the space was a Tibetan Buddist bowl and I was moving a pestle round and round to create the resonance. Lyn said she'd never been there on a sunny day, never seen the light blob on the wall above us near the sky hole which moved and morphed as we relaxed into our bodies.
The new copper clad de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park has handsome angles and textures. The fissure that opens as a crack in the brick and fractures to crack rocks in the courtyards is a permanent installation by Andy Goldsworthy. I liked the installation, which is called "Faultline" though I've been rather off my Goldsworthy adoration since watching him ignore his family in the Goldsworthy documentary. Which gets us into the art vs. artist debate, which isn't so interesting really, is it? My husband got so mad at T.S. Eliot from watching the movie "Tom and Viv" that he refuted any idea of T.S. Eliot as having a place as a poet, to his poetry having any value or beauty. Which I love about Jim while still loving The WasteLand and The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.
In front of the lawn outside the de Young as we approached was a line of motorcycles and on the lawn was a group of mostly guys apparently involved in caber tossing. They wore skirts, from midi to mini. A couple of them wore kilt skirts, and one, who had dark brown hair luxuriously curly as The Cowardly Lion's mane in The Wizard of Oz and Robert Downey Jr.'s beard in Fur and reminded me of a young Falstaff, even sported a dagger in his sock, though nobody wore a sporan. Their caber was a hollow cardboard cylinder. Do not think paper towel roll. Think ten feet long and walls 3/4 of an inch thick. Not a tree trunk, but still heavy and awkward to manage. They were a Santa Cruz motorcycle club who'd asked permission of someone at the museum in order to put on this brief goofy contest that set my mood for our whole free museum experience.
The sculpture garden also includes work by Claes Oldenberg (a huge diaper pin) and Zhang Wang (a shiny metal sculpture that mimics though is even better than Chinese stone I've seen displayed as art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, in 2001.

1 comment:

Radish King said...

I could talk to you about that movie, Fur, at length. At great length.