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November 25, 2005

Is that Your Sister??

Nangoldin_viewersIt's that Holiday Time of year, which means.... crowds of tourists everywhere, and lots of NYC social functions to attend.  Most are fun get-togethers and of course it's always great having good friends over to drink celebrate! 

I have just one issue! Maybe it's just me, but am I the only art collector who always feels this slight bit of anxiety whenever new friends come over for the first time?  It typically involves some aspect of having to explain why some of the art is on the walls. I find over the years the art I live with has become very personal, and it's not always a pleasure to show it to just anyone.  Sometimes I even, depending on the friends, find myself quickly putting certain works away .. just not to deal with the judgments questions.  Am I crazy? Does anyone else out there ever do this??

As a New Yorker, I like to think most of my friends are worldly and in general pretty well educated.  Well...most of them went to college.  And with the notable exception of one truly "Special Case", most could easily tell you who's buried in Red Square!! 

Anyway.. it always shocks me how little many of them seem to know about modern art.  Maybe it's something specific to just art photography. But, I can't count how many times a friend has pointed out one of the Diane Arbus photographs on the wall, and then asks me sincerely if that's a photo of my mother, or father?  Like.... Hello??  Are you freaking kidding me?  How is one suppose to take that question??  These are powerful photo's of god damn disturbed freaks of society, the mentally Ill, transvestites, and drag queens!! Not my parents!!

Or the most frequently asked question goes something like this.... Several people, after walking around, and drinking a bit, they notice this same red haired women recurring in several large color photographs around the loft.  And eventually they get around to asking if this image of "The Lady in the Blue Bathroom" is my sister?Nangoldin_bluebathroom_1   Yikes! They don't know of Nan Goldin?  Has our education system failed so miserably?  Or are most New Yorkers just too busy to go to a museum or read an art book?  Am I expecting too much?  Any thoughts?

Well..sorry for the rant.. But, I just had to get that off my chest... because, of course, it happened again yesterday!!  And I'm sure it's going to happen again!! Grrrr.....

Happy Holidays!!


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Don't worry... We've always loved your pretty pictures on your walls.. your dad thought they must have been photo's of some of your NYC friends!

do not encourage conversation about the art in your home, and hopefully the subject won't arise.
secondly, you will know someday just how very small and insular the artworld is. if you have interest in things nan goldin, that's a personal tangent... don't expect everybody to embrace your background and interests... and inturn, you won't be expected to know more than you do about things outside of your own bubble. some might infact say your nan goldin interest is rather pedestrian, so it's all relative. the artworld encourages a tunnelvision, and an elite circling... fall into that trap at your own peril... because your life needs to be well-rounded. everybody brings something to the table... be generous.

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