I ran into Mahlen and he recommended this book. It turned out to be pretty good. It's about the place of museums in society. Yeah, I know it sounds awful, but hear me out. It's sufficiently interesting such that I didn't throw it across the room even after it mention Habermasian publ%&*@
Sorry, I had to throw this laptop across the room when I noticed that this blog post was in danger of mentioning Habermasia... uhm, mentioning that. What was I talking about? Oh, right Museum Legs. Uhm, she points out some interesting things about the economics of museums. Like, we folks of the public trust the museum bigwigs to pick out art for us. We trust them to not just buy things from cronies. We trust them to pick out art that we should see, not necessarily the art that we'd naively choose.
She points out that when a museum offers art lessons, those lessons are popular. And she lobbies for the idea of educating museum-goers about making art. We'd appreciate art better if we had some idea of how to make it. Those frickin' Rothkos are more impressive when you start thinking "Whoa, wait, how did he do that?"
And there's some noodling and philosophizing about the role of art in society, what it could be. And that museum in Philadelphia, yeah that one. And the history of museums as instruments of temperance and... and other stuff I'd heard already.
But the economics and the art-lessons were new to me. Good stuff. Special bonus: this Kindle book said "em" when it meant "span". E.g., instead of saying "Spanish", it said "emish". Since <span> and <em> are HTML tags, I wondered if Kindle format is somehow related to HTML format. And maybe that "emish" is the artifact of some search-and-replace gone wrong. Anyhow, fun read.