Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Thinking about looking and time...

I have been thinking quite a bit about what it means (or can mean) to have a relationship with an artwork. Like all relationships, it's complicated. In today's Huffington Post I was interested to see this new column by James Elkins, historian and critic at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The title of his piece is "How Long Does it Take to Look at a Painting." Link is below. He talks at length about people who have spent lifetimes looking at single works of art. Little does he know that there are dozens of us in Portland doing the same thing...


"...to spend that much time in front of an artwork, you have to be in dialogue with it. You have to listen to it, and think something in response, and look again, and see how the work has changed. You have to believe that you can have an ongoing, evolving relationship with something that is unchanging. Many people might say that is impossible."

-James Elkins

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