Friday, June 17

a day at LACMA

Sporting purple aviators from Ray-Bans!

Today I went with friends to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, better known by its abbreviation: LACMA. It is an intensely beautiful museum that can be found near the intersection of the Wilshire and Fairfax Boulevards in Los Angeles, and carries a great collection of art from various parts of the world. The lure of today's escapades was undoubtedly the very popular Tim Burton exhibition showing from now until Halloween 2011. Unfortunately, photography was not allowed within the exhibition so I can't really post any teaser pictures, but I highly recommend it to anyone interested in visiting the museum. It's a must-see for anyone who has ever seen a Burton work and thought to themselves, "Well, where in the world did this idea come from?"

I'll readily admit that I'm not a hardcore Burton fan, and I have no shame in writing this down. In fact, the Burton fan within my group of friends is undoubtedly my artist friend Tracy, who has always had an affinity for the creepy-looking. She was also the first person to introduce me to Burton via the famous animated film, "The Nightmare Before Christmas," which I found highly intriguing because it was a really atypical Disney movie. But even I could really appreciate the exhibit, which showed a lot of work from Burton's younger years, including some of his art portfolio from his time as a student in CalARTS. The exhibition also featured some of his writings -- cool poetry -- and even some of his preliminary film projects as a CalARTS student and when he was only starting out with Disney! I found it incredibly fascinating to have been able to look inside the mind of a famous artist whose work influences even the very young, giving them something other than the cotton candy, Disney Princess fluff that I've been fed during my childhood. (Not that there's anything wrong with Disney Princess fluff, because everyone could use some cotton candy now and again, but you can't appreciate the "light" without some "dark" to offset it, which Burton's work does.)

I now have a new appreciation for Burton's art, his work, and most especially his philosophy. Some people may talk about his work being gothic-romantic or something, but I think it's more satirical than anything. His style lends itself to his voice, and his work continually trips up the "romanticist ideal," of everyone being beautiful and of love being perfect. Life is a messy work, love can make people do some crazy things -- like tear themselves apart, hello, Sally! -- and everyone is "mad as a Hatter" even if they think they're completely justified to be a loon. Burton's characters are not perfect little heroes; most of the time they're incredibly flawed beings who get stuck in their own heads, thinking they're right while everyone else is wrong. Meanwhile everyone else thinks they're right and the character is wrong, and signals are missed, communication handled badly, and everything gets worse before it even begins to get better. Because that's real life, and Burton wants everyone to know that's how he sees it. And there's not much gothic or romantic about it. If anything, it's downright macabre.

Basically, I think Burton's brain is a combination of Edgar Allan Poe's and Doctor Seuss' minds. I don't think anyone expects those two to collaborate, but they do in Burton, and then you get the weirdest little fairy tales anyone ever did see. And from a literary standpoint, I absolutely find it brilliant. I love the macabre. I love it twisted and faulty and wrong, because it's not pretty and it's something people need to get over. And I think -- this really is just my personal opinion I'm writing down -- that Tim Burton sees it that way, too.

I recommend this exhibit. It's just a real treat, and the rest of LACMA isn't bad, either.

I would just advise wearing only the comfiest of walking shoes, because I walked almost nonstop with my friends for about ten hours just to try and see most of the place and I am going to be sore when I wake up. As it is, I've planned another day out with my sisters to go and see "Green Lantern" and I'm sure I'll be walking very slowly to the cinema. Whatever, it'll be fun. :)

I was meant to work out with Maya today, but I didn't get around to it, having returned home at a pretty late hour and being too tired to turn on the Wii. I've got no problem booting up the old laptop though!

This summer, it looks like I'm going to get in touch with my artistic side again. ♥ Feels good.

No comments:

Post a Comment