Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Take a load off

Two very different items about gallery seating appeared in my feedreader today (obviously a hot topic in the States at the moment).

The Brooklyn Museum blog posted about the importance of providing seating for weary and contemplative visitors, and notes that they have different styles of seating for different parts of the Museum:

In our American Identities galleries, we created four seating islands, which consist of a carpeted area with chairs and reading tables. In our new contemporary galleries, we have incorporated commercial furniture: Kartell’s “Plastics” line of modular seating. And at other times we have created custom seating, such as the benches in our Egypt Reborn galleries, which have Egyptian revival stylings.

At the Art Institute of Chicago, it's a very different story. Blair Kamin blogs on the Chicago Tribune site:

For a fleeting moment Thursday, a hint of tension crept into the voice of James Rondeau, the Art Institute of Chicago’s contemporary art curator. An out-of-town journalist had asked whether the museum would set up benches inside the galleries of its unfinished Modern Wing so people could sit and stare at the knockout view of the Pritzker Pavilion’s metallic shells and the painterly swath of the Lurie Garden in Millennium Park.

No, Rondeau replied, although there will be benches for looking at art. The view to Millennium Park is "quite strong," he said, even describing it as "relentless."

Overall, the latter is an interesting article about the battle between environment, architecture and art display, whilst the former is the kind of quirky post that the Brooklyn Museum excels at.

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