16 March 2016

It's not what you look at that matters...

"It's not what you look at that matters," said Henry David Thoreau, "it's what you see." Hence ... slow art day.

Coming up at the Ashmolean, Oxford - Slow Art Day, Sat 9 April, 2-4 pm. Sounds good - 
Discover the pleasures of taking your time to appreciate a work of art. Look at five works of art for 10 minutes each and discuss what you have seen over afternoon tea. 
This session will include works by Bassano, Canaletto, Claude Lorrain, Mark Gertler, and Bernini
Slow Art Day is an international event encouraging people to discover the joy of taking time to look at art.
 Perhaps these will be the paintings....

By Bassano (c1510-1592) - Christ among the doctors

By Canaletto (1697-1768) - A view of Dolo on the Brenta Canal

By Claude Lorrain (1604/5-1682) - Landscape with a goatherd
By Mark Gertler (1891-1939) - Thomas Balston
By Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680) - Self Portrait

BTW the Ashmolean has an amazing number of online collections - browse them here.

But back to Slow Art - when I first heard about this, there were no events listed in London. Now the National Gallery has one.

Slow Art Day Basics?

Here are some basic options for how Slow Art Day works around the globe.
Sign-up at a local museum or art gallery
Click on the list of 2016 venues, find one near you and register online (it's free).
Attend and look at 5 pieces of art slowly
Show up on Saturday, April 9, 2016 at your venue, pay the admission fee (if there is one) and then look slowly - 5-10 minutes - at each piece of pre-assigned art.
Some museums pick 5 pieces of art, others may concentrate on 1 or 2 - while yet others will give more options.
Discuss your experience
In some cases, you can meet up with your volunteer host and the other participants at a pre-assigned lunch spot.
In other cases, museums will facilitate discussions in front of each piece of art.
Whatever the design is - what all the events share is the focus on slow looking and its transformative power.

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