Making a Museum fun: laugh, joke, & hashtag

It has been too long since I have written about art. A trip to the museum can be an excellent source for inspiration. Last Saturday night instead of taking myself out for dinner and a movie I opted to book a tour with Museum Hack. I picked the VIP tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Museum Hack is a company dedicated to making museums fun.  MH are not interested in you silently walking around a museum listening to a docent talk.  They are committed to making sure you can enjoy, laugh, and drop an F-bomb if you want to. I went into the tour hoping to experience the museum with fresh perspective. I was not disappointed.

Hot Cocoa Mayan Mug

Hot Cocoa Mayan Mug. Fart Jokes making us laugh since the dawn of mankind. Metropolitan Museum of Art Collection.

My tour guides were Matt and Jen. They were funny, engaging, and made sure to include each participant in their witty banter.

One of the highlights of the tour was when Matt and Jen lead us through the Mayan collection. We paused at what looked like a vase with images and ancient Mayan text [to the left]. Jen informed us that this was not a vase but a cup for hot cocoa. At about twelve inches high that’s enough hot cocoa to last through a NYC blizzard, right? Maybe that’s just me. According to the curator of this wing the text on the cup is a fart joke.  That’s right.  I learned that farting has been hilarious since the dawn of human civilization. Who knew that a culture known for killing people to appease the Gods had such an excellent sense of humor? I sure didn’t.

George Washington Crossing the Delaware. MET Museum Collection.

George Washington Crossing the Delaware. “Why is Meryl Streep there?”-Matt

Another highlight was in the American Wing. We  got to think of Intsa worthy hash tags and admire “George Washington Crossing the Delaware” [to the right]. I had no idea this painting was in the MET.  I also had no idea it was so huge!  Fun Fact: In the late 1800’s when this painting was created, American’s didn’t care a lick how factually inaccurate the painting was, they only cared about the possible insinuation that GW had tiny balls.

Around this point in the tour we learned that the guards do not like it when you have fun and quickly “shhh” you if you laugh too loudly.  This spoke volumes to how much fun we were having (pun intended).

I don’t want to spoil everything I got to see in case you decided to take this tour yourself.  However, here are some more objects I enjoyed seeing while there:

Lilith Scuplture by Kiki Smith. MET Museum Collection.

Kiki Smith. Lilith, 1994. Bronze with glass eyes. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

This sculpture is hanging on a wall.  The artist, Kiki Smith, who I LOVE, does her best at creeping you the F out with these glass eyes in a bronze sculpture making them seem real.  As a fan of horror, I love it. Nightmare fuel art should be a new classification don’t you think?

 

 

 

 

 

Creepy Girl Painting. MET Museum Collection.

I was unable to snap a photo of the plaque to tell me whom this is by. Oil on Canvas.

This young lady has quite a stunning outfit, but as an artist I can only see how off the proportions are.  As Jen said, American artists weren’t really good at painting until a few hundred years after this was created. Painting is hard.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bamboo Tornado. MET Museum Collection.

Tanabe Chikuunsai IV. The Gate. Bamboo.

The Japaneses wing has a collection of art pieces made of bamboo.  The versatility of bamboo is astounding. Did you know there are 600 different varieties and that it is classified as a grass?! These are Jeopardy facts that I am happy to have in my back pocket now.  Bamboo facts for $600 please!

This sculpture is floor to ceiling, impressive, and stunning. If you want to see a time lapse of this being build you can see it here.

 

 

 

 

 

Pixell Deer. MET Museum Collection.

Kohei Nawa. PixCell Deer 24. Mixed media; taxidermied deer with artificial crystal glass. 2011

It is really nice to see more contemporary and modern art making its way into the MET. This sculpture was beautiful and reminded me of Christmas and snow. Until Jen let us know what was under the glass.  Not Christmas-y at all.

 

 

 

 

 

MET Museum Collection Rodin Sculpture Hall

We got to pose like the statues. This turns into a surprise. I LOVE surprises!

In three hours we covered almost the entire permanent collection of the MET. We posed as some Rodin statues, had a competition (prizes were awarded), and never once did I get bored. If you want something fun and different, book a tour, bring some water, and wear some comfortable walking shoes. Museum Hack offers specialized tours focusing on themes like Game of Thrones and Baddass Bitches (this one sells out quick so book soon!) as well as the VIP tour at the MET. Additionally they offer a tour of the American History Museum. Visiting San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington D.C. or Chicago? You can book tours there as well. I always say, art is meant to be seen in person so see some art and get inspired!

Make sure to comment below on some of your favorite museums or tours you have been on.

Manus X Machina

Living in New York City, I have the great fortune to have access to so much great art and fashion exhibits.  I will do my bestto go to every fashion exhibit I can to share photos with you all and give my thoughts.

Chanel Wedding Dress Manus X Machina

Featured dress in the show. Chanel Wedding Dress designed by Karl Lagerfeld. The train is hand drawn, then the design is digitized, machine fabricated, and then hand beaded.

The first one I attended this year is the new Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute show, Manus X Machina curated by Andrew Bolton. This show if you were able to attend the China Through the Looking Glass show is a lot smaller in scale, but not smaller in impact. The entire show is based off of the book, the Encyclopedie, ou Dictionnaire raisonne des sciences, des arts et des metiers (Encyclopedia, or systematic dictionary of the sciences, arts, and crafts), and broken down into sections.  Each section highlights the following: floral, feathers, beading, embroidery, pleating, leather work, lace and a section devoted to handmade tailoring.

The show, covering two stories, is Fashion Design Basics 101 for anyone who wants to compare old and new techniques.  After walking through the show I really wished there was a Rent the Museum Exhibit site like Rent the Runway.  If there are any savvy tech minded fashion people out there, I’m looking at you!

One of the fascinating aspects of the show is they paired classic pieces with contemporary works. They also comparison to pret-a-porter (ready to wear) and masison de coutre (couture house) in the show.  To me this emphasized that the quality of a garment is not contingent on if it is hand made or not.  There were dresses made by hand next to 3D printed works. One fascinating dress was made out of  Magnetized rubber!

I happened to have gotten a tour of the MET’s Watson Library three days before the opening and the word in the museum was the show was still not finished.  However many hours of working to finish in time paid off.  The show has stunning work in it (just ignore some spelling errors and the vinyl letters that don’t stick to the canvas downstairs).

Please enjoy a small photo tour of pictures I took below!

Florals Manus x Machina

These four designs are from the floral section. I would wear all of these.

Feathers Manus X Machina

These are from the feather section. The bird on is all silicone. There were dresses made entirely out of cut straws as well. Mind Blown.

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Dresses from the leather section. The White ones are lazer cut and the black one is all folded flowers using origami technique!

3D printed dresses Manus X Machina

3D Printed dresses from throughout the show. The designer, Iris Van Herpen, is a visionary in my opinion.

Pleated manus x machina

Pleated Dresses. That circle, it becomes the dress to the right.

Chanel Suits Manus X Machina

Chanel Suits. I died.

manus x machina

Ever wonder how a dress gets designed and put together? Wonder no more! These forms showed us half finished designs that let us peek into the process.

Manus X Machina

1940’s dress with 2000’s machine dress. A video plays above it showing you how the dress basically breaths in and out.

Beading manus x machina

The far left dress is a Chanel 1940/50 hand made dress. I would wear this in a hear beat. This is from the beading section. The beading work on every dress was flawless.

lace Manus x Machina

This was the oldest dress there from the late 1800’s. It is in the lace section. The hand made lace was just beautiful. It made me wonder what it looked like brand new.

Lace Manus x Machina

From the lace section. I LOVED this outfits use of lace, feather, and beading to create contouring.

Lace Manus X Machina.

1920’s lace dress. I want one in every color please.

Lace Manus x Machina

Contemporary lace dresses. Alexander McQueen’s dress on the left caught my eye right away. I always love his work, even if I could never wear it.

Flowers Manus X Machina

This is in the flower section as well. Even though I would never wear this skirt, this sweater I would so rock in a heartbeat! I enjoyed the scientific breakdown like a text book. The dress behind it, 1950’s stunner!

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Also in the flower section. This dress is made entirely out of metal. In order to get into it, you open up the back and step in, and then are locked in. It has wheels on the bottom to be able to move around. No thank you, but interesting modern take on a seethe dress.

Flowers Manus x Machina

Another pair from the floral section. These are Prada dresses and I want them both complete with the broaches. I’m a sucker for Prada.