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Strangely reminiscent of Fahrenheit 451?
"We need not to be let alone. We need to be really bothered once in a while. How long is it since you were really bothered? About something important, about something real?"
  from Fahrenheit 451-Ray Bradbury

I first entered the cool marbled entrance of the Detroit Institute of Arts in 1992 as a Jr. High student.  At that moment I was aware that the solidarity of this building would stay with me my entire life even if I had turned on my heel and left it forever...

I was, what I consider, a typical moody youth then and haven't really outgrown it in the latter sixteen years; I mostly try to work around it.  I've never really been much of a researcher, either, so I didn't know what to expect on this visit other than some pretty pictures and names I had no hope of pronouncing.
Rivera Court
  We were studying Egyptian art in school and that was the cause of the field trip, but it wasn't the artifacts that would make me concentrate on drawing slow deliberate breaths but a single room we traveled through to get there. 

The first corridor to greet me was the armory.  The beautiful polished metal that protected some unknown knight stood sentinel with its brothers along both walls.  Fascinating?  Yes.  Life altering...well not for me.  We continued on our brief visit through the hallways of lavish canvases, ornate tapestries and statues so real they are likely to breathe on their own.  I admired the Dutch Rembrandts and van Goghs, the French Bouguereaus and Manets and the Spanish Velazquezes and Picassos.  I found a new fascination for Americana art and the craftsmanship of teapots.
Detail of Assembly
  But these are not the pieces that incapacitated me.  That was saved for the Rivera Court and its electrifying mural.

Along with my irrational emotions I was born with an exaggerated fear of injustice.  I trust people, all people, to do the right thing when it comes down to it.  I am naive and will continue this way until I'm convinced otherwise.  It's a happy existence that I choose.  Despair is enough to stun me for weeks.  And I was not prepared for the loss of hope I encountered as I passed through that doorway. 

It began with the singularity and loneliness I felt as I realized I was the only one crying.  My fingertips numbed and my saliva glands went into overtime as I gulped in the air.  Every sense was working against me trying to push the onslaught of information out of my body.
Modern Medicine panel
  Tears blurred my sight, the pounding of blood in my ears blocked the sound of the others' voices, tingling throughout my body to stop the pain of the possible crash against the buffed floor.  My mind was trying to convince me that maybe I should look away to stop the images, but I couldn't.  I had to take it all in and get the whole picture.  I had to feel every prick against my not-so-calloused soul of what I, as a human, am capable of.  Such atrocities.  Such resolution.  Such unwillingness to change.  All in the name of Progression.  I both wanted to feel it and feel nothing at all.  Then, it stopped as quickly as it began. 

I thought about other things.  I was looking at the wall, but I had removed myself from that room to a place where progression, true progression of the good could possibly take place.
"Life is short, Art is long"
  I snapped back to reality, dried my eyes and chit-chatted with my friends of "normal" teen-aged matters.  I could reflect on this in the privacy of my own head and dwell on what this might mean for me later. 

When an artist touches you with such ferocity you cannot escape it, you take it in and it becomes a part of you to guide your decisions, occupations, interactions....

This melange of plaster and pigment made me realize the power of art and ideas.  Art would henceforth be my First Love. 



pretty_girl says:
Congrats on your featured blog Melissa! Like it!
Posted on: Sep 17, 2012
monky says:
Congrats on your today's featured blog Melissa!:)
Posted on: Sep 17, 2012
efren1989 says:
Congrats:))
Posted on: Sep 17, 2012
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Strangely reminiscent of Fahrenhei…
Strangely reminiscent of Fahrenhe…
Rivera Court
Rivera Court
Detail of Assembly
Detail of Assembly
Modern Medicine panel
Modern Medicine panel
Life is short, Art is long
"Life is short, Art is long"
Passenger vs. War Plane detail
Passenger vs. War Plane detail
Making the V-8 detail
Making the V-8 detail
Love Finding Painters Guides
Love Finding Painter's Guides
28,706 km (17,837 miles) traveled
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photo by: vulindlela