I know I am privileged to see so many different works of art in real life. Yet there are only a few that stay with me. As a regular visitor of museums and booklover it makes it even harder to remember everything. That’s why I walk around with my camera around my neck when visiting a museum. I do try to pay as many attention as a can to every single work that I pass, but it’s not always easy when you have to visit huge collections and you get tired and hungry after a while.
When seeing a work of art for the first time my first instinct is to examine it, I need to know what I am seeing. This is something that I struggle with, it’s almost impossible to do this with every work in a museum. Every museum has it’s own relatively large collection which makes it impossible to view everything in one visit. This gives me a longing to keep visiting the same museum over and over again.
So that’s what I did, this summer I went on a road trip through Germany and Austria. One of the museums that I visited, for the third time now, is the Neue Pinakothek in Munich.
A work in their collection of which I remember my first impression of is one of Vincent Van Gogh. More specific, the Sunflowers. I wasn’t a Van-Gogh-lover, until I had the chance to see his work up close, 4 years ago. The way he transfers his paint onto the canvas is extraordinary, I love the thickness of it all. Knowing he was such a tortured soul, it is remarkable how he made such colourful work.
My vision of museums has changed a lot over the past years. As a regular visitor of museums, I start to notice so many different things which I wouldn’t have a few years ago. This brings me to the moment when I was walking around in the Neue Pinakothek and I noticed that some visitors weren’t admiring the paintings as much as they deserve. Some people didn’t even look at them, but they immediately took a picture and walked on. It almost breaks my heart to see how they (don’t) interact with these works of art. Nowadays it’s all about ‘I went on a trip and I visited a lot of popular museums and made a selfie everywhere. Look how cool I am.’. It’s a fact that museums are getting more popular and I am not complaining, it keeps them from being deserted. But there is a limit to everything. There are so many things I can say about this topic but it would be way too much to share, I might write some more in future posts.
Now, back to my visit. It would be almost impossible to forget this visit. First of all, I really like the person who was with me. Second, I like the fact that I got to visit this museum with a more developed point of view than four years ago. There are so many reasons, but there’s one story in particular that makes it almost unforgettable. I would love to share this story with you.
Try to picture this. It was almost the end of our visit, only one more room to go. We were standing in a smaller room, admiring a beautiful work by Gustav Klimt. When all of a sudden we hear a loud unexpected noise, a fart. We both turned around very quickly and saw a middle aged asian man leaving the room. We caught him in the act and he had absolutely no expression on his face. No other visitor responded to this incident. This little incident surely made this visit memorable.
If you love museums and you are planning on going to Germany, you should definitely make a stop at the Neue Pinakothek. You won’t regret it!
This was originally published on Our Pursuit of Art.