Sunday, February 28, 2010

Can't wait to see this.




I'm a sucker for documentaries.

26 comments:

my favorite and my best said...

i had no idea. documentaries feed me like books should.

Anonymous said...

Judging just by the tone of the trailer, I first thought that this unparalleled collection was going to be set on fire or thrown into a wood chipper or something. But it looks like the "tragedy" is that a lot more people now get to see this art. If that's the case, it's going to be hard to feel a lot of outrage.

Francine Gardner said...

I also really enjoy documentaries. Really hope to see this one...Francine

Decorno said...

Anon 10:11 - agreed. Sounds like that's been one strong reaction against this film... that it doesn't do a good job explaining how badly managed the collection was, and that no one could get to it, it was barely served by public transportation, etc...

Bloggers Abode said...

I'm watching this preview on IFC right now- Looks like a very cool story.

Anonymous said...

That's my problem with documentaries: They are so seductive, I never question them. Whereas when I read a book, my BS detector is going full-force. Something about having been brought up on TV, I guess--it makes the screen seem infallible.

mary said...

This one looks really good. Thanks for the heads up.

Shelley said...

From the trailer, it sounds like a story of Robin Hood, bad guy, but not really that bad, does it for the good of the people. And from the other posts, it seems that way too....can't wait to see it.

Anonymous said...

If the man owned it he had every right to decide where he wanted them viewed. The sad thing is that once your dead your wishes die with you. Looks interesting thanks for the heads up Decorno!

LIttle Miss Lee said...

I am a sucker for a great doc as well...

Chris Rocks stolen new one "good hair" could have been SO MUCH BETTER. Grr...

This looks really interesting! Thanks for the heads up.

red ticking said...

looks good... so disappointed in single man... finally saw it at harvard exit tonight... have you seen it?

Penelope Bianchi said...

Love love love.....I saw the Gardner Collection in situ. It was amazing and so sophisticated.....everything up the walls.....and wonderful juxtaposition!

That is what Mr. Gardner wanted preserved. It is shocking that it was moved. Now it will be done by a museum curator. Not wrong. Just wrong for this collection.

A terrible thing.

will have to see this documentary!

thanks!! again and again!!

Penelope

Grant K. Gibson said...

Looks great!
I too love documentaries. I always feel like a nerd watching them.
Have you seen:

http://www.herbanddorothy.com/

The Voices of Nerd Fancy: said...

This should be good. I went to the Barnes Collection last spring, and it was the BEST art museum I have ever been to. They stagger the visiting times to limit visitors and to allow for a less congested opportunity to see the art.

The intimacy of the collection was amazing. It was the opposite of institutional, and the works Barnes collected were beautiful. He had a collection of Matisse that you wouldn't believe. Matisse even painted a large mural in the estate.

The grounds of the Barnes were magical, too. They were developed by Barnes' wife.

Anyway, I'm happy that I saw it before it leaves Merion, PA for good. I wish that Barnes' vision could remain honored.

AlwaysMe said...

This looks fabulous! The intimate feel of the Barnes reminds me of the Stewart Gardner in Boston. I hope this comes to my area otherwise I'll have to wait for dvd. Thanks for posting this.

Wendy said...

I'm NOT a sucker for documentaries, but this does look good. When does it come out??

Anonymous said...

One can't make an informed opinion based on a 2-minute film trailer.

As a former museum professional, I've been following this story for a few years. It is appalling. Tantamount to a rape, really. I hope the film does it justice by presenting the full picture.

And by the way, the same thing is happening in Los Angeles right now with the Southwest Museum. Unfortunately, the art world has been strangely silent, and local protesters can't seem to frame it in in the "right" light (sort of like Obama and healthcare).

MoreSkinnyDays said...

Did anybody see that other documentary about the Japanese government feeding tainted dolphin meat to Japanese school children? That one looked good too! Will have to look for these on Netflix.

slag said...

"Tantamount to a rape, really."

Really? Must we?

Anonymous said...

Re: Anon @ 9:58 "the art world has been strangely silent."

That's right. And a big part of the difficulty of "framing" the problem, is the commodification of culture and our complete and unquestioned acceptance of that paradigm.

Yes, rather like the commodification of health care that we wholly accept and, for the most part, do not insist on an alternative paradigm.

Market ideology runs deep.

Richie Designs said...

They reviewed this last night on At The Movies, I walked in on the end I can't recall what they decided I think one said see it the other said rental.

I love documentaries like My Favorite and my best does...they're my books. Me and Sundance Channel we got a thing going on.

Anonymous said...

"Tantamount to a rape"?!

Did that artwork ended up in a dumpster behind a 7-Eleven? Was it physically damaged in any way?

Anonymous said...

I grew up in the Philly burbs and as someone who is an atheist and not particularly into "important" art, I can honestly say the Barnes Foundation is the closest thing I've come to a religious experience. I'm not exaggerating. When you see the Renoirs (over 175!), 69 Cezannes,countless Matisses, Picassos, Modiglianis and Van Goghs, you just want to pull up a chair and cry. Barnes insisted that the paintings be hung densely with cool medieval relics, African art and modern furniture. It's a very intimate setting. Truly spectacular.

Anyway, the Philadelphia elite who want to move this collection are vandals plain and simple, with tourism dollar signs in their eyes. Its such a shame.
I watched the film last night and granted it is one-sided, but on the right side I beleive. Most every art and cultural critic who has written on the subject has opposed the plan, which is going to gut the greatest American cultural monument of the early 20th century and relocate the art to a large tourist venue. Moving the collection will ruin the experience the owner of the art intended. What people who don't know the history of Barnes should realize is that Barnes created the foundation with a mandate to use the collection for art education, not commercial display. In his will, he said the artworks couldn't be lent, sold or moved. The galleries were to be open to the public two days a week - other days were dedicated to educational programs. He has no heirs so the vultures step in.

Now the Philly power brokers want to destroy this man's vision so that they can get control over a 30billion dollar prize. It's sick.

If you live in the area, I'd take a trip to see it where it is now because it just won't be the same. Tantamount to rape, maybe not, but vandalism by money hungry elite, yup. There is no reason the state could not have used the 107 million it had in its budget for the foundation to fix the place up and honor Barnes' legacy.

Penelope Bianchi said...

What the heck? The Southwest Museum? I grew up in Pasadena.....(neighbor to the Southwest Museum)!

I'm going to dig for what on earth is happening there!

Wonderful , small museum of mostly Indian things. A true small treasure.

The Barnes Collection in its gardens and envronment is an unusual and amazing treasure. How dare people cross what the man who bought each and every thing and placed each and every thing! Now that reminds me of communism!
He wanted most viewings for education. His placement was magnificent!
No; it isn't being destroyed. Just what the man who collected; paid for, and gave the endowment for supporting it in his fashion; that is being destroyed. Shame.

Oh dear.


Oh dear.

Anonymous said...

I studied at the Barnes Foundation. I was fortunate to have had Ms Violette Demazia as an instructor there. I totally understood Mr. Barnes' and his educator friend John Dewey's vision. Before studying there, I too was annoyed by the fact that one had to make an appointment; that the viewing times were staggered; that we had to stand 4' away from the walls; that there were no color photos of the paintings; that there were bad paintings near by excellent paintings by the same artist, etc. etc.
But, once I studied there I saw that it was a truly educational experience, where one could appreciate what is good and what is bad in a work of art; that objectivity must stand firm, so that the genuinely spiritual and emotional aspects of art may truly be appreciated. The admissions process was a totally democratic and eclectic one, as Dr. Barnes intented. There were people from ALL WALKS OF LIFE. With one thing in common. A deep desire to understand the foundations of what art is and why it is important for our race.
Among others, Matisse's "La Dance" was created for the building, which is decorated with Jacques Lipschitz' bas reliefes, also created for the edifice.
It is truly a shame that the collection will be displayed in any other way, other than in the way it was established by the Foundations creator.

Sparkie said...

I'm sorry I'm late to the party on this one.

First of all it's the ISABELLA Stewart Gardner Museum. It was the collection, residence, and legacy of a woman. With such an airtight will that when paintings were stolen in an infamous robbery, their places on the wall remain blank to this day. What did she know that Mr. Barnes didn't?

Two: Anyone who has trudged through the big box office exhibits at the major museums with a "limited admittance" ticketing process knows that they do not work and become an incredibly annoying cattle call. Give me a small, perhaps hard to get to, lovingly curated museum any day.

And part C: other things can be raped without taking anything away from the holy terror that is the rape of a woman. There are nuances of the word that allow it to be used in other circumstances ie. "rape of the land", etc.

Looking forward to this movie. Wonder if this can be viewed on cable IFC Now In Theaters..