One of the engaging aspects of art is experiencing the work up-close and personal.
There’s something special about seeing beyond the surface and examining intricate details, subtle messaging and the texture of a piece. But, the coronavirus pandemic has changed that quite a bit.
“I’ve been gaining more access to information and experiences of artworks through digital memes than I’ve ever really admitted to myself.” — Barry Schwabsky, The Nation
To maintain proper health and safety regulations, galleries and museums have expanded online exhibition viewings and artists are showcasing their works even more on social platforms. With this level of socially distant accessibility, how has our personal experience with a work of art changed?
Listen: Art in COVID-19 era turns Instagram into an experience.
Barry Schwabsky, art critic for The Nation explored this topic in an essay that illustrated how scrutinizing art online – specifically Instagram – has shifted the role of the critic.
“When you’re talking about things like paintings and sculpture, you’re talking about things that really have to be experienced in the presence of the actual thing. A painting seen as a jpeg online or on your phone is something very far from what you’d experience on the wall in a gallery or museum,” Schwabsky says. “I’ve been gaining more access to information and experiences of artworks through digital memes than I’ve ever really admitted to myself.”