Review (kind of): Gallery Explorations

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Guest: Jennifer, Second Year Communications Student

At this point I feel as though I’ve seen Becoming Animal/Becoming Landscape a thousand times. I’ve become so familiar with some of the works that I have begun to see them in my dreams. Now this is not a complaint, I loved the show and all the pieces in it. However, after a few times seeing the same thing over and over you start to lose your grasp on what you’re really seeing. Thankfully for me, on my last trip to this installation I had my lovely friend Jennifer with me. Eager to see and experience “the other side of the library” Jenni was excited for our trip.

We entered to a quiet gallery. Only one other person was visible towards the far end, so we were more or less alone. Perfect. For some reason, I think there’s something about a busy art gallery that puts people off experiencing it. For those of us without the trained eye, we feel as if we are somehow viewing it “wrong.” Having others around to watch us aimlessly attempt to interpret these complex images is a little scary. I was happy that for Jenni, she would get the freedom to experience the space. Overall, I tried my best to hang back while she worked her way through the gallery. In typical Jenni style, she asked me a lot of questions. Questions about the show, certain works and their meanings. Thankfully I didn’t have many answers. If I’ve learned anything from my time with KAG, it’s that not everything needs a concrete answer. Sometimes it’s better to just let what’s in front of you exist.

We didn’t have as much time as I would have liked, but such is the student life. Always hustling and bustling our way to the next experience. On our way, out I asked Jenni about what she thought, but it didn’t feel quite right for this excursion. All of my other outings have been about an event, a set program with rules. It makes sense to critique those because there was thought behind planning it. For our walk through the gallery though…it was different. Had I been asked about my opinions the first time I saw the show I probably wouldn’t have been able to place that into eloquent speech either. Perhaps the artistic minded would be able to provide commentary right away, but for us it wasn’t that simple. For two communications students who regularly deal in the “real and practical” world, coming to an art gallery is like stepping through the mirror. It is truly an entirely different realm of thought, one that our minds cannot quickly process. But, that is why I recommend it. Whether alone, or with another friend who hasn’t a clue I wish people would go and do things like this. Stepping out of your world and into another is jarring, but in a good way. It allows us to see things from a unique view that can be hard to obtain. If the staff at KAG has made anything clear to me it’s that everyone is welcome. You don’t need a BFA to have a real experience here, you just have to go for it.

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