Letter: Art is calling for me | AspenTimes.com

Letter: Art is calling for me

Art is calling for me

It’s as if a giant $45 million Longaberger basket fell from the sky. And breathed out … gobbling up 20-some parking spots. Spots sacrificed (ostensibly) on the altars of aesthetics and the greater good.

For most of the naysayers, this will be enough to obviate the need to actually go inside the new Aspen Art Museum. If you do venture inside, most of the exhibits might remind you of art that can also be found in the public library’s basement. Another sacrifice. This was probably a good thing.

I could now focus on the white wall with a single black square on it. For me it was an artistic interpretation of the “end of the tunnel.” Like some chaotic theory, being close to this “piece” opened up a plethora of choices. Choices of interpretation and inspiration. Suddenly the turtles were no longer the victims of man’s cruelty to animals, but rather messengers from one of humankind’s possible futures, temporarily sacrificing their dignity to give all of this planet’s animals a voice. Are we hearing the animals?

One floor down from the turtles was a fascinating exhibit of ultra low-cost structures made of paper tubing. For the cost of a single iPad, an area roughly the size of the whole museum building’s footprint could be covered with shelter. Are we hearing the world’s poorest peoples?

Looking out through the thin hedge of the Aspen Art Museum’s exoskeleton, one can see the town of Aspen and its surroundings. In a few weeks the lattice-like view will be changed and charged with bright yellows, oranges and reds. In a few more weeks we can add splashes of white to the palette. Maybe the basket will be like Sopris and look better with some snow on it.

If art can serve to wake us up through interpretation and inspiration, then the new Aspen Art Museum is not a sacrifice, but a success.

Fred Dick

Snowmass Village


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