MSG in the Guggenheim

by Amy McLeod
July 28, 2010

I got frustrated walking through the Guggenheim.  I was having a hard time finding a piece of art that reminded me of Madison Square Garden.  There was nothing related to athletics or entertainment.  I realized, however, that I was thinking far too literally.

Then I walked through the exhibit called Broken Forms: European Modernism from the Guggenheim Collection.  This exhibit was made up a many different pieces of art.  They all consisted of vibrant colors and exciting shapes.  There wasn’t a clear top or bottom;the pieces could be interpreted anyway the viewer saw fit.

Franz Marc, Broken Forms (Zerbrochene Formen), 1914 (detail). Oil on canvas, 111.8 x 84.4 cm. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York 50.1240

These pieces reminded me of Madison Square Garden because of their ability to be seen in different ways.  MSG is a large space that can accommodate anything from sporting events to concerts to the circus to dinosaur exhibits.  It is flexible and it’s true purpose can be debated.

I felt that the pieces in the Broken Forms exhibit were similar.  Their meaning could be debated and the meaning might change depending on how the viewer chose to look at the art.


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