In this series, Education Specialist for Public Programs Emily Bray highlights participants in the 2016 James McLaughlin Memorial Staff Show, on view through September 19, 2016.
What do you do at The Phillips Collection? Are there any unique/interesting parts about your job that most people might not know about?
I’m a Museum Assistant and also part of the AV department. It’s interesting to see exhibits go from initial planning phase to actual show. I also enjoy meeting living artist who are in the collection. The only drawback is that when I go to other museums, I start counting how many security rules people break.
Who is your favorite artist in the collection?
What is your favorite gallery or space within The Phillips Collection?
The Rothko Room. What many people see as just solid color in the paintings is actually, when examined, a blend of color with depth and texture. Spending hours in the galleries changes your way of seeing.
What would you like people to know about your artwork on view in the 2016 Staff Show (or your work in general)?
The view is looking into a window of a hotel lobby that has reflective blinds that are also transparent. You can see straight through and behind you at the same time. I used photo editing to enhance some the colors. I had never tried to alter a photograph before but was pleased with the results. When I look at it I think about how in cubism, multiple perspectives are going on all at the same time. I also thought of Leo Villareal’s piece Scramble with LED lights constantly in motion. When people look at the work, some say it’s a kaleidoscope; others think water. I got a Gerhard Richter comparison. The most bizarre comment was from someone who thought it was taken at a strip club. It seems to serve as a Rorschach test for the viewer. It’s an intersection moment for me.
Anything else about your work you’d like to discuss?
The relationship between music and visual art has always been of interest. I might hear some music which makes me wonder what kind of visual image would go with it. This can also work in reverse.
The 2016 James McLaughlin Memorial Staff Show is on view August 14 through September 19, 2016.