three gallery days

Tuesday at the Walker Art Gallery

I was determined to see the Martin Parr exhibition so it was off to the Walker we went (he’s one of my favourite photographers and I’m lucky to have seen his work exhibited twice prior). Usually when we go to the Walker, it’s for a learning session or we just head to Big Art and the kids have their fun there while I spend a mind-numbing hour or longer making sure Ares doesn’t eat paper scraps. On this day however, I declared that we were actually going to see art before going to Big Art. Seeing that the exhibition was essentially that of street photography, I was in heaven, and the images didn’t disappoint. It also gave me a bit of a kick in the ass to do more street photography (unfortunately, I do practically nil these days). Because there was quite the myriad of images, I didn’t get a chance to properly see them all. Ares, who wanted to be carried around rather than crawl, was enthusiastically seeking out pictures of dogs or other animals in the images and signing every time he saw them. Raspberry initially viewed the images with me but soon got bored and draped herself over the furniture (she later left a comment on the wall about what she thought about the exhibition). Faced with the prospect of half-absent-mindedly hurrying through the rest of the images with antsy children underfoot, I decided instead to return another day, perhaps sans little people, with any luck. It’s the kind of exhibition I want to return to, and those tend to be hard to come by.

Wednesday at Tate Liverpool

Amid blustering winds, we trekked to the docks because dammit, I couldn’t face being inside all day. There wasn’t really anything particular I wanted to see there; I just needed a day out. We did see some new art, an exhibition of György Kepes’s work, which reminded me a lot of Moholy-Nagy and some of the Russian art from the early 20th century. I had a brief discussion with the gallery attendant about it, as I attempted to dredge up my limited knowledge of art history and mistakenly referenced futurism. He was nice though, and showed and explained photograms to Raspberry while I sat on a nearby bench to nurse Ares, attempting to eavesdrop on the explanation. Like the previous day, I wanted to see actual art instead of spending all our time at the Art Dock (the family room that’s the Tate’s equivalent to Big Art). It turned out to not be the best idea, as it was all art we’ve seen before and it merely resulted in restlessness and bouncing from one thing to another with barely any engagement. Granted, I wasn’t exactly into it either, having seen it previously and not being all that interested in it to begin with. Raspberry and Ares preferred to look out the window and at one point, were chided for having their feet on the windowsill (or really, I was, for allowing it).

So it was off to the Art Dock, where we spent way too long among the same stale pom-pom display that’s been there for over two months. The Art Dock usually has interactive, well-thought-out activities, so I’ve been disappointed by the pom-pom display that has little to offer, beyond some foam for my baby to chew into tiny, chokable pieces and my kid to fashion pipe-cleaners into hammers. I expressed my thoughts on two comment cards, slipped into their donation box because there was no where else to submit it to. Ares spent way too long tinkering on the computer keyboard and it was almost a Heculean task to extricate him from it. Every time I tried, I was met with high-pitched, ear-piercing shrieks of displeasure. I think he was tired, as transitioning to other tasks was hard for him all day. Faced with the unadmirable job of having to change his diaper, I let him type some more while I settled on the couch with a book about Louise Bourgeois and her work about the maternal. If I had to wait, at least I could read something interesting while doing so. As I skimmed the book, I realized I really should’ve read up on her work prior to giving birth so I might’ve made some pregnancy or birth-related art. Oh well. I’m going to look up more of her work anyway. We finally left the Tate after some tears and a water break. I usually like being there, but feeling scattered and like I barely saw anything good, I was just happy to leave this time.

Thursday at FACT

Raspberry decided she wanted to go to FACT today and I’d promised her weeks ago that we could go back and see the Group Therapy exhibition again. She really wanted to take on the maze again, so that was first up. When we first saw the exhibition weeks ago, all four of us tried out the maze, which is meant to simulate the experience of psychosis, and it was jarring, to say the least. Being in there once is more than enough for me. Meanwhile, Raspberry did it twice today, both on her own (the first time, she needed a little help but when I proved useless, I exited the maze and she took it on on her own. I was more effective being a sideline cheerleader and assisting her by pointing out the path on the ground). I was quite impressed she managed it by herself. She most wanted to see a display of safety pins embedded within the maze and was thoroughly excited when she encountered it. While she meandered her way through, Ares busied himself trying on oversized headphones and attempting to tap on a frozen iPad. I couldn’t tear him away from it.

In the other gallery space, we headed for Raspberry’s favourite exhibit, which involves a projected, almost psychedelic image that changes based on your heart rate. Even Ares wanted to get in on it too, and he insisted I place the pulse monitor on his ear and laid down too, albeit, not on the right side most of the time. I love how he’s so much into imitating others now. Raspberry made her requisite chalk pastel drawings in response to her experience in the exhibit and did one for Ares too. As usual, there was chalk dust everywhere. We ended off in the foyer, which is where we usually start, spend way too much time there, and have little time to actually see the exhibits. I’m in love with the way the space is designed and with all the bright colours that shockingly, don’t clash. I’ll be sad to see it go when the exhibition closes. Anyway, our time in the foyer was limited this time, on account that it was getting late and we still had groceries to get. We were there long enough for Raspberry to read The Dark and to slip into the all-padded room. We’ll probably hit up the exhibition again before it closes in a few weeks. It’s a decent exhibition and we all seem to enjoy it.


2 responses

  1. !!!!

    Love this, all of it!

    May 2, 2015 at 6:17 am

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