Saturday, September 10, 2016

Illegal Motion

I know that you're not allowed to touch artwork in museums, but I also know that "mobile" means motion, and so when I saw a tiny little Alexander Calder work sitting perfectly still on its pedestal in the Hirshhorn this afternoon, I wanted to see it move. So both the rule-follower and the problem-solver in me stood before the little mobile and blew very gently, watching it twirl and admiring its perfect balance and grace.

"Please don't blow on the artwork," a stern voice interrupted me.

I turned to face it, quizzically.

"I know it doesn't say so," the uniformed guard apologized, "but to preserve the art, we really don't want people doing that."

"Okay," I shrugged.

She lowered her voice. "I've never seen that move until now, though," she told me. "It's amazing. Thanks!"

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