Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Art Imitates Life

In 2009 while visiting NYC, I made a trip to the rooftop garden of the Met. As I stepped out into the bright clear blue sky day to observe the city skyline and Central Park, I was met by a tangle of brushed aluminum branches seemingly growing and stretching skyward, curving, entwining and filling the space, suggesting a continual linear growth. Manmade organically shaped welded branches overlooking Central Park; the largest green space in NYC. What is it that Roxy (the artist) is trying to say? It is just that the artist is interested in undulating fluid linear forms, or is there a deeper concern...a visual dialogue to be had between what man must work at making, while in the natural world these forms are produced without man's interference. Is there a hidden social comment about what we create to replace the real thing and why we humans feel we must improve on nature. Recently on a walk along the Indian River in Florida I found myself confronted with this question. Looking up into a bright clear blue sky I observed the most beautiful tangle of weathered gray branches seemingly growing and stretching skyward, curving, entwining, filling the space suggesting a continual linear growth. Where had I seen this before??? Ah, yes...on the rooftop of The Met! Was the artist simply reminding us of the beauty of the natural world?...sharing his imagined experience with those locked into a world of concrete, steel and asphalt? If this is the case, I can accept it. But for me, even though I can enjoy the beauty of this manmade form, it will not replace the original that I found as I walked along the Indian River Lagoon. Jan Thomas

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