IN HONOUR OF ITS 25TH ANNIVERSARY, THE BERMUDA NATIONAL GALLERY FOCUSES ON THE MANY WAYS WE ENCOUNTER ART. Courtesy of Lisa Howie, Executive Director, Bermuda National Gallery When I first encountered the sculpture of Italian Alberto Giacometti, I was stunned. I almost fell backwards down the escalator as this towering, impossibly thin figure in mottled bronze became more statuesque as the steps drew nearer. In that moment, the art took my breath away; it gave my life new meaning. To acknowledge Bermuda National Gallery’s 25th Anniversary, we decided to focus on the many ways that we encounter art. Our history as a museum involves decades of local and international exhibitions; a growing collection that spans time, regions and genres; and years of education programmes that have reached thousands of people. The relevance of this history, however, is rooted in the human experience, those moments of art engagement, past, present and future. With a nod to British art critic John Berger, The Power of Art is an exhibition that seeks to challenge ways of seeing. The artwork is curated by section, each space having a thematic focus that is relevant to topical and important issues, such as protecting the environment, artist as activist, gender and equal access. The juxtaposition of historical and contemporary artwork from the permanent collection is augmented with loans of art by Damien Hirst and Shepard Fairey. Berger says, “The strange power of art is sometimes it can show that what people have in common is more urgent than what differentiates them.” Art has the power to transcend barriers, and the art museum is a safe space for discovering different ideas. Exploring difference within common grounds is an urgent social issue that we support. The Power of Art is an exhibition that we hope will inspire audiences. Please visit us soon in the City Hall & Arts Centre, Hamilton. For more information, visit bng.bm.
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