Wasting Art on the Public?
Jones does go on to suggest a simple and sensible solution to the problem:
Miroslaw Balka's black hole at Tate Modern is terrifying, awe-inspiring and throught-provoking. It embraces you with a velvet chill. As you ascend the ramp into what you might imagine to be a vastly enlarged cattle truck or gas van, the ghosts of the 20th century seem to march alongside you into nothingness.
At least this is what it might be like, if it wasn't for the hysterical laughter of teenagers, the fairground screams of tourists, the thuds and bangs of people jumping up and down to test the strength of the steel floor, and the loud comments of people saying they thought it would be darker.
Is the Tate Modern audience ready for a chilling and serious work that invites contemplation of death and dereliction and the Holocaust? Apparently not, if the annoying atmosphere on the first public day of the exhibit was anything to go by.
Perhaps a queuing system, a limit on numbers, a film about Auschwitz before you go in might help.But that came too late in the post to prevent the some blistering counter-attacks from his readers, such as:
- Anything that punctures the pretension of Tate Modern is to be applauded.
- A site-specific work doesn't work in the specific site. Let's blame the public.
- [and one so snarky it should win an award]: Art is only for the few. The marauding middle class scum that invade galleries at the weekends would be much better off at Thorpe Park or Disney land Please leave Art to the educated, thinking intellectuals who understand this stuff and can pay due respects to the solemn, serious, respectful spectator who comes armed with the correct cultural equipment.
In fact, why not round up all the Thickos and put them on a train, and then we can transport them across the countryside in the middle of the night and then we can put them in a camp of their own, where they can watch the X factor, read the Daily Mail and eat non-organic produce all the time.
In the evenings they can have lectures on the correct response to alter-modern work, and then they can come back to Tate Modern, re-trained re-sensitised and able to fully appreciate the subtle metaphors explored by Balka.
I want joyful children laughter in democracy...not fake concerned establishment pathos.Lesson learned? Suggesting the public is the problem never makes your solution to a situation go over very well. Had Jonathan made a modest proposal rather than a lecturely admonition (and the museum had heeded his advice), he might have made allies among his fellow frustrated art viewers longing to experience the piece as was intended AND the rest of the visitors who simply are responding naturally and honestly to the work.
A part of my family got send to the camp.
I dance for them and sing loud enjoying living life in each moment.
If we don't consider the first more important than the second we might drift straight into the same dehumanising mess...for "holy" reasons.