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img138 img140 Is the Museum dead?

Are they no more than “culture parks” which offer trinkets to buy for the masses to take home to show to their acquaintances “we were there” ?

Every once in a while, in these self aggrandizing architectural wonders, the so called master cult cathedrals, a self professed expert, who studied and is now endowed by Academia with umpteen degrees in sociology, art history and God knows what else (but who has never “created art” him or herself) will be pruning the proverbial art tree branches or will “seed” the grassroots of our “understanding” art.

Surprise! Surprise! Yes a nice surprise!

NOT HERE! Not on a cruise ship because the art floats with you as you travel over the seas.

Kudos go to the author of the Catalog essay below.

The 134 page white cover catalog is titled “Reflection”The Celebrity Art Collection Catalog is like the collection itself outstanding!

img136img137Note: The phrase half way down the page (above) “Society of the spectacle”, was coined by a now obscure author, filmmaker, artist, political and social figure of prime importance, the controversial French rebel and philosopher Guy Debord (1931-1994).

Debord, wrote one of the most important books in 1967 on society and its change in the last 50 years, titled Society of the Spectacle (More on Guy Debord in a future post soon). Let’s have a look at some of the various types of art represented in the collection and visible on these ships:

img144Above a Dye transfer print by William Eggleston (1939-) titled Memphis ca. 1969-1971.

In Michael’s Club we see a work by British artist Julian Opie (1958-) on wood in vinyl and paint, from the 13 Outfits Series, 2000.

img151 img149img143Christo and Jeanne Claude are represented (below) by this offset print from the Monument Series 1969. An iron curtain wall of barrels in the Rue Visconti, Paris 1961-1962. You can wrap the German Reichtag or Central Park but a ship?


img146img152img153This is plain awesome!

img154Below near the Aft stairs hangs this mesmerizing glass panel based installation which explores issues of surveillance and self obsession. Using many separate glass parts the artist Graham Caldwell (1973) arranges them so they reflect off each other and mirror their surrounding space. His works have been exhibited at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC and the Brattleboro Museum, Vermont.

img156In the Bistro on Five hangs this mirror and glass “liquid mirror curtain”, a motionless drama that the Portuguese artist Sofia Leitao (1977-) offers the viewer to reflect upon intellectually, as well as, physically. The artist works at the limits of artistic disciplines. Her sculpture contains a stillness juxtaposed by the idea of the dramatic flow of a velvet curtain thereby representing a fantastic reality. The curtain is reconstructed by the many shards of mirrored glass.

img161For the very curious among you I have posted the index of the Celebrity  Art Collection Reflection and the index of the additional 1990-1912 Collection.

img158 img159 img160Much to see and much to cruise! Don’t miss out on the David Hockney and the Robert Rauschenberg either.

On the other hand, for the money spent on the cruise you also could buy a work of art yourself. Baby boomers and trust fund lurkers could probably do both.