In some ways, Friday night’s opening reception for Carlos Garaicoa: La enmienda que hay en mí (Making Amends) was business as usual at CAM. The museum was packed– inside and out– with a mix of art students, faculty, and other folks from around the university and the community. The artist shook a lot of hands. Beer and wine flowed freely. And conversations took place left and right. In other words, a typical CAM opening.
However, during the course of people-watching throughout the evening, I noticed something different about this reception. The visitors I saw– in the blackened hallway where the silver Crown Jewels glimmer in display cases, or surrounding a wooden table covered with tape drawings on artists’ mats– were really looking. They were focused intently on Garaicoa’s work.
What’s unusual about this, in my experience, is that receptions tend to be a time for chatting and shmoozing. (Remember, there’s free beer!) Go to the reception for a party atmosphere; come back later if you really want to look at art.
What I saw– people examining lightboxes or a folded paper city for long stretches of time– struck me as an huge compliment to the craft and the ideas in Garaicoa’s art. Amid the sensory stimulation of the reception, visitors were still powerfully drawn into his work. And I’m betting that a lot of them will be coming back to see it again.
Haven’t seen the exhibition yet? Come on over to CAM and check it out…
~ by Megan Voeller | USF Graduate Student | Art History
Video from the Opening
Just a quick pan of the show floor in the big room. Shot by Justin Martin.
Pan of the show floor in the small room. Also shot by Justin Martin.