Action is the foundational key to all success. – Pablo Picasso (Or, a trip to SFMOMA)

20 May

Last Monday, with one day left in the Bay Area (for now) my mom, aunt, and I took the ferry into the city and had a nice little lunch at a Thai place (I’ve been so down with Thai these days, but frankly, who isn’t?). Then we headed over to SFMOMA (the SF Museum of Modern Art). I wasn’t sure what to expect, and with a $15 entrance fee, I doubted whether the collections would live up to the hype. I like modern art a lot – but it can be kind of hit-or-miss. This was a hit.

The first piece that struck me hung in the atrium and was basically a revised view of American history. This shows Thomas Jefferson at Monticello (the other one was George Washington at Mt. Vernon), but with shadows of planation slaves incorporated into the piece. The idea here is that so many depictions of these places leave out the slaves who also lived and worked there.
Latest Obsession: Jeff Koons’ “Michael Jackson with Bubbles the monkey”
I first learned about this piece in Mass Comm (ahem, Media Studies) 101 this semester with Prof. Marina Levina when we talked about the shift from traditional art to “concept” art. This isn’t cool because of the sculpture work in the way that the David statue is. What’s cool about Koons’ work is the concept behind it. This highlights the obsession with oddities, celebrity culture, and relationships in mainstream America. The placard describing this piece also highlighted that Bubbles’ right leg looks like it could be MJ’s third arm. Interesting, and also awesome. I was SO happy this was in the collection.
The museum is celebrating it’s 75th anniversary, so the collection seemed to be especially awesome. I also really enjoyed this one, in part based on what I’d “studied” this semester in Media Studies 101.
This is a photograph of an altered Marlboro ad (with all ties to Marlboro removed). The original ad is meant to depict a cowboy, but it is not a true cowboy but is staged for the ad. This piece is essentially a photograph of that ad, and in that sense becomes a more “authentic” piece than the original.
My absolute favorite is Roy Lichtenstein’s Rouen Cathedral Set V
I love Lichenstein in part because of the statute he did for the Barcelona olympics, and I fell in love with the Rouen Cathedral when I was there in the summer of 2006. When I visited, we stumbled upon a special exhibit at the cathedral in which Monet’s paintings of it were projected on the facade of the building. It was truly epic – and this re-interpretation of Monet’s renderings were just really awesome, and such a cool surprise for me to stumble upon as I walked through the exhibition.
Here are some photos of the Rouen Cathedral from my visit the summer after high school.

One Response to “Action is the foundational key to all success. – Pablo Picasso (Or, a trip to SFMOMA)”


  1. art of the daycation. « That's G - June 28, 2010

    […] I recently realized my affinity for modern art through trips to LA’s MOCA and SFMOMA and I’ve loved Van Gogh and Monet since I was embarrassingly young. While the Getty is […]

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