Closer to art
BY wangxingwei from 21st Century
Published 2018-06-12
Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama is known for her use of polka-dots. FILE PHOTO

None of the major traditional museums seemed to see it as a threat when the Museum of Ice Cream opened in New York in 2016. After all, as a “pop-up museum”, it only stayed open there for a month.

However, as more of these pop-up museums started showing up over the next two years, they seemed to become a trend that should have been taken more seriously. And the latest member to join this list is the Museum of Pizza, set to open in New York this October for two weeks.

It seems that museums are no longer just places to “see” art. People want to have more interactive experiences instead of being kept a polite distance from exhibits, as they normally are in traditional museums. At the Museum of Ice Cream, for example, which is currently located in the US city of Miami, visitors can jump into a pool of plastic sprinkles. And at the upcoming Museum of Pizza, people will be able to lie on a “pizza beach”, where they can experience a “wave of cheese”.

“Not only are [visitors] taking pictures of art, but they’re taking pictures of themselves within these spaces,” Jia Jia Fei, a director at the Jewish Museum of New York, said in a TED Talk. “In the pre-digital photography era, the message was: This is what I’m seeing. Today, the message [is]: I came, I saw, and I selfied.”

This immersive experience that pop-up museums provide also allows visitors to get away from their real life – even just for a short period of time – and enter a fantasy world.
快闪博物馆所提供的这一沉浸式体验也让游客们远离现实生活 —— 就算只有很短的一段时间 —— 并进入一个幻想世界。

For example, Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama took her exhibition “Infinity Mirrors” to Washington, US in 2016. It attracted a large number of visitors who were willing to stand in line for hours just to visit each of the six mirrored rooms for just 30 seconds. However, the long wait seemed to have been worth it.

“I felt an unexpected calm,” wrote Baltimore City Paper reporter Maura Callahan after spending 30 seconds in one of the rooms. “Something about the vastness of the illusion rubbing up against the actuality of being confined to a box was comforting, like a deep breath.”

Maybe it’s this experience of feeling close to art that allows pop-up museums to not only keep “popping up”, but also to remain open – at least for now.
或许正是靠近艺术的这一体验让快闪博物馆不断“闪现”,并将继续开放下去 —— 至少现在是如此。

(Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Ji Yuan)
Trend  趋势
Interactive  交互式的
Sprinkles  糖屑
Era  时代
Selfied  自拍
Immersive  沉浸式的
Illusion  幻觉
Rubbing up against  与......摩擦
Confined  幽禁
Comforting  舒适的