A Visual Treat in Vancouver
Art is always something that we have to celebrate. It’s not always that easy to understand, but we can easily see the effort that went into its creation. And of course, once we see that, we can see the real beauty that goes into each piece.
These were the words playing in my mind as I entered Vancouver Art Gallery. I was immediately greeted by a massive exhibition — the gallery’s biggest ever. It’s called “MashUp: The Birth of Modern Culture”. With almost 400 works by more than a hundred artists, the exhibit took up four floors. It was amazing, sending the viewer into a tour all the way up to the early 1900s. In my opinion, the exhibit pushed the word “mash up” to its limits — but it was a real treat!
The works started with 21st century art in the ground floor. This area showcases various digital and media technologies. There is even a section that combines different dance styles with fashion. The visuals were backed up by old music, making the exhibit very immersive. True to the entire exhibition’s “mash up” theme, there are also pieces that splice different artworks together, essentially making a visual remix.
The exhibit goes backwards in time up to Picasso on the gallery. The gallery also has pieces from different museums all around the world. They said it took 30 curators to create the entire exhibition.
Perhaps the young ones of today can relate most with the giant black-and-white mural of emojis and text. It is between the second and first floors, and is interestingly called “Untitled”. It is said to be a critic of how much the current generation accepts and uses these cultures.
Another interesting exhibit can be seen in the museum from June to October. None other than the famous cubist Pablo Picasso takes the center stage. And the exhibition is not just all about Picasso’s works — it also explores the painter and his interesting love life. Aptly entitled “The Artist and his Muses”, the works shows viewers stories of the six women who have been called his “muses” (lovers or wives).
The exhibition emphasizes how much Picasso drew inspiration from women, even on top of other sources. It is interesting to see how these women played a role in Picasso’s growth. Each of the paintings exhibited in the gallery fetch millions of dollars in price. There was also a screen in the middle of the exhibit where viewers can watch how Picasso painted.
The Vancouver Art Gallery is a whirlwind of visual treats, and it doesn’t really take an art critic to see how exciting the experience is. I really enjoyed taking a peek at the different representations of art throughout the years. It is also interesting how the entire experience is far from how the public sees it. It is not all about looking into frames and trying to puzzle out what the works mean. Vancouver Art Gallery changes that by including technology and highly relatable pieces for everyone to enjoy.