VanGogh – I want to have you on my phone!


Today I visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art to see the photography exhibit by Michael Snow, which I will review soon. Afterwards I sat down in front of van Gogh’s painting of sunflowers, but the funny thing was that everyone seemed to be more interested in getting a photograph of the painting on their smart phone or having a quick portrait taken of themselves next to it. Nobody looked, and I mean really looked, at the painting itself. It’s value as a commodity and celebrity status seem to have overtaken it’s life as a remarkable painting…

About Douglas Barkey

Director of Teaching and Learning Effectiveness The Art Institutes Photographer, Artist
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2 Responses to VanGogh – I want to have you on my phone!

  1. Krista Smth says:

    I am a fan of Van Gogh myself. Starry Night is my all time favorite painting. I agree with you about people being on their phones all of the time. It seems as though as the phones get more advanced, human interaction is decreasing. I see people all the time taking photos of things whether it be an artist painting or just a photo in the mirror of the bathroom. I feel that people are missing out on a lot of things going on in the world. It seems all they are worried about is getting a picture of something and then sharing it on social media. With the situation you witnessed those people have no idea the of the work that went into that painting. Taking a photo of it does not allow one to appreciate it. I didn’t think that photos were allowed in museums anyways. Well, I guess everybody has a phone with a camera on it now. Society needs to take a step back in time when a cell phone was just a cell phone and not a must have to live. This way we can get back to those things that are way more important and we can learn to appreciate things again. Van Gogh was an amazing artist and he created some beautiful paintings. Viewers of the art works should not worry about taking a picture of it but more about the painting itself. They need to take in the technique, the craftsmanship, and the time put into that said painting. People just don’t realize what they are missing when they are starring down at a phone screen. Maybe one day people will realize that they need to put down the phone and get back to living life.

  2. You bring up such a great point here. Not just with art and photography but with life in general. People do seem to care more about taking a picture or a “selfie” with a rare or amazing painting instead of really looking at and understanding it. This is why I want to have my images stand out. I want people to want to take pictures with them or next to them because they are that “rad” or “cool” or hip or popular, but….. I also want my images to speak volumes, tell stories, grab attention. It’s a very large goal of mine but certainly attainable.

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