Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Ragnar Kjartansson at the Hirshhorn Museum

It's no secret that the Hirshhorn Museum is one of my most favorite museums in DC. And we've seen some seriously cool exhibits move through there (you can find lots of our past visits here). But the Ragnar Kjartansson exhibit was truly like nothing we've ever seen. It was so interactive and, just, alive—we were all completely mesmerized. I had heard plenty about the "gold lady" ahead of time and a few whisperings of another cool musical installation, but I wasn't really prepared for the whole experience. I knew it was going to be a lot of performance art, but knowing that and experiencing it are two totally different things.

To start, it's a massive exhibit full of so much art. And the set up seemed to take advantage of the Hirshhorn's circular architecture in a way that just kept drawing us in further down the rabbit hole. We couldn't wait to see what was around the next bend.

The gold lady was all that and then some, but for some reason it freaked the kids out a little bit to stand so close to a live person and not feel like they were just staring at someone. So I didn't get any really good shots of it, which is fine because you should go see it yourself anyway!

They loved the long curving halls of art and found the few initial video installations interesting, but it was the larger musical installation that totally captured us all. I don't want to give anything away, but I will say that it is an installation that takes a long time to view in it's entirety (I think it was 64 minutes). And we stayed in the room for 1 1/2 views. Standing the whole time. The thing I couldn't get over was the feeling of delight and togetherness it seemed to bring to everyone in the exhibit. In a time when so much of DC seems to be depressed, this particular exhibit delivered a totally unexpected feeling of hope. It is truly amazing and I'm so jealous of the first-time visitor!

We finally dragged ourselves away from that and wrapped up the rest of the exhibit fairly quickly. I'd promised the kids that we'd get out to the sculpture garden, so I took them across the street to let off a little steam.

The exhibit will be at the Hirshhorn until January 8, 2017. If you are anywhere near DC or are going to be visiting before then, it's a must see!!


Tina smith said...

I was so engrossed in this exhibit that my toddler ran away and my friend had to go get her, I'm so glad she was there!

Not-So-SAHM said...

Oh no Tina!! At least you had a good excuse :)