Warhol, Dali, & Mucha

On Friday March 31st, my father and I visited the Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali, and Alfons Mucha exhibits within the Gallery of Art Prague. I was familiar with work by Andy Warhol and Salvador Dali, but I hadn’t heard of Alfons Mucha and was excited to visit the high-profile expositions.

We began with Andy Warhol. As I’d seen the Van Gogh Museum do in Amsterdam, the exhibit focused on both Warhol’s work and life. I’ve seen a lot of Warhol’s pop art but this was my first time seeing his videos—I found them a bit underwhelming. I actually really enjoy Warhol’s pop art, as I believe strongly in the value of defamiliarization, making everyday objects seem strange and interesting. We take too much of our aesthetic landscapes for granted.

After Warhol I believe was Mucha. I wasn’t especially infatuated with his work; it was alright. I was more interested in the curation of the exhibit’s space. There were many interesting pieces of furniture, and different walls had been painted unusual colors behind different paintings. As in the INI gallery, I was again reminded of how an art exhibition involves so much more than just the artwork.

Finally was Dali, and I think he was my favorite of the three. Dali’s surrealist paintings read like a dreamy fantasy. He creates a world of stilted elephants that it’s pleasant to imagine one’s self in. A large quote on the wall stated “People love mystery, and that is why they love my paintings.” I don’t know if “mystery” is exactly the word for it, but I think I know what quality Dali is trying to describe. He also seemed to have no issues with self-confidence.

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