The Rubin

My journey to the museum was complex but well worth the trip.  After making an accidental pitstop at the Rubin Museum of Art, I eventually made it to the 8th floor.  I was greeted by a friendly man and quaint, one room, gallery.

My eyes were immediately drawn to a bubblegum pink installation in the corner.  As I walked closer, I learned that these were trash bags, inflated with air. Upon further inspection, I noticed two pieces of paper in each bag, each with the word ‘Love’ written on it.  Artist Maren Hassinger filled these bags with the breath of love, each bag representing the joining of a couple. This installation creeps up the wall and appears to be fragile, showing the fragility of love.  

All the pieces were made up of recycled materials, put together to form a work of art.  One of the larger installations contained flattened bottle caps that were attached by wire.  The pieces were not flush against the wall, they had a natural shape to them, creating ridges and shadows along the wall.  The color of the piece comes from the natural color of the various parts of aluminum, which translates to an array of grey.  Anatsui, the artist, calls this an in between color, as it is neutral. This grey area, no pun intended, gives a sense of calm, that allows for the viewer to take in the materials, without distraction.

The final piece that I visited, caught my eye while walking through the museum.  I took a closer look and realized that these were silhouettes, formed from leather.  The artist, Shin, used recycled/ leftover materials from Marc Jacobs and other designers to create this series.  This stuck out to me as I have been hearing a lot about a ‘capsule closet’, which is a minimalist approach to wardrobe, as you only keep around ten items to form several different outfits.  The brand that pioneered this idea uses recycled fabric to make its clothes. This method of turning found materials into art, cuts down on waste and repurposes it into something useful.

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