General Question

BronxLens's avatar

What Makes a Great Art Exhibition?

Asked by BronxLens (1527 points ) March 24th, 2009

Looking for your own definition but links/text to others’ are welcomed too.

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16 Answers

marinelife's avatar

For me, it must have a cohesive theme. I also like it if it shows progression by the artist or artists. The show has to be hung in an attractive way that maximizes viewing.

drClaw's avatar

I like when an exhibit has continuity. Something about having people with similar interests in art gives an exhibition a little more life. Here is a great exhibition: http://suitup.bigcartel.com/photos

3or4monsters's avatar

This is a personal definition, not a general one, but—- I find I am most impressed and artists who can make the ordinary seem magical, and inversely make the magical seem quaint, ordinary, and simple. I adore that approach. Anything that will make you re-think your current perspective might be a more “general” take on the matter.

TitsMcGhee's avatar

A good exhibition and a good piece or body of work are two entirely separate things. A good exhibit moves you fluidly from piece to piece. The pieces look different but have a unifying theme. Technical skill is evident, but there is still an original point of view and individuality. While those last two are also present in a good oeuvre, the unifying theme should be more broad. The good qualities of an individual piece are a whole different story.

HarmonyAlexandria's avatar

most people stated the “cohesive body of work” thing, which is more of a what differentiates a palatable exhibit from a bunch of stuffs scattered about a gallery.

Discounting for taste, what differentiates a good exhibit from a mediocre one is who shows up at the opening(good company drastically improves people’s impression of the work), and how well the artist presents their work (Gallery/Studio interviews)

Amoebic's avatar

Content is obviously very important, but I think another strong factor would be location. This covers a lot of aspects that can either seriously detract or notably enhance the experience of the exhibit. Not only where the exhibit is showing geographically, but how that location chooses to exhibit art and when.

The environment in which art is experienced has a direct impact on the perception of the pieces, so I think it would help with the success of the show if there was a conscious effort on the part of the artist (or their publicist/promoter/etc) to choose locations that positively impact that method of delivery.

SeventhSense's avatar

I think the best new stuff doesn’t always consist of sculpture, painting or even an exhibition space. But I think that the one continuity in all of Ethan Ham’s work is his engagement with the viewer. In fact they depend upon the viewer’s involvement. I find that to be brilliant. It’s like the artist has so completely immersed himself in his art that he has removed himself as an element. The whole thing is turned on its head. Like he’s saying, “Ok now I’ll watch you”. “Do something ”.

Blondesjon's avatar

A lot of expensive wine, an artist, and a shitload of pretentiousness.

my apologies to grandma moses. you know i don’t mean you, boo

TitsMcGhee's avatar

@Blondesjon: LOL4RL. Art openings in NYC are just that.

SeventhSense's avatar

@TitsMcGhee
Represent girl..
Don’t be dissin’ our city

TitsMcGhee's avatar

@SeventhSense: Aw, you know it’s true though…. And I’m right there being a pretentious fuck with the rest of them, sippin’ their wine, checkin’ their arts.

Judi's avatar

Great art.

Glow's avatar

Sometimes, its not just the art. Its also location. Its also how well you advertised. Its also how many artists you got to participate. Its also what kind of artists are participating. Also, if you give them food, they WILL come ;)

judyprays's avatar

First and foremost, for me, either displaying art that really pushes boundaries or changes my perspective or inspires. Allowing the public to talk to the artist is nice.
Also, bonus bonus bonus points for an exhibition that facilitates interaction.

Negative points for wine + cheese + “art”

TitsMcGhee's avatar

@judyprays: Hey hey – free wine at art openings is GREAT. Most of the people at an opening are friends and family of the artist anywho, people who don’t need bribing. And there is never cheese. Trust me, I’ve looked.

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