Skip to Content
Museum skepticism: a history of the display of art in public galleries

Museum skepticism: a history of the display of art in public galleries

Carrier, David, 1944-

'Museum Skepticism' traces the birth, evolution, and decline of the public art museum as an institution meant to spark democratic debate and discussion. The text suggests that ideas and inspiration may be found in mass entertainment such as popular music and movies. In Museum Skepticism, art historian David Carrier traces the birth, evolution, and decline of the public art museum as an institution meant to spark democratic debate and discussion. Carrier contends that since the inception of the public art museum during the French Revolution, its development has depended on growth: on the expansion of collections, particularly to include works representing non-European cultures, and on the proliferation of art museums around the globe. Arguing that this expansionist project has peaked, he asserts that art museums must now find new ways of making high art relevant to contemporary lives. Ideas and inspiration may be found, he suggests, in mass entertainment such as popular music and movies.Carrier illuminates the public role of art museums by describing the ways they influence how art is seen: through their architecture, their collections, the narratives they offer museum visitors. He insists that an understanding of the art museum must take into account the roles of collectors, curators, and museum architects. Toward that end, he offers a series of case studies, showing how particular museums and their collections evolved. Among those who figure prominently are Baron Dominique Vivant Denon, the first director of the Louvre; Bernard Berenson, whose connoisseurship helped Isabella Stewart Gardner found her museum in Boston; Ernest Fenollosa, who assembled much of the Asian art collection now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Albert Barnes, the distinguished collector of modernist painting; and Richard Meier, architect of the J. Paul Getty Center in Los Angeles. Carrier's learned consideration of what the art museum is and has been provides the basis for understanding the radical transformation of its public role now under way

eBook, Electronic resource, Book. English. Electronic books.
Published Durham, [N.C.; London: Duke University Press, 2006
Rate this

Available: Online

This item is not reservable because:

  • You can only request items from our lending collections. You cannot reserve journals.
  • Online – One available in E-book

    Barcode Shelfmark Loan type Status
    E-book Online Available

Details

Statement of responsibility: David Carrier
ISBN: 0822387573, 9780822387572
Note: Includes bibliographical references (p. 269-304) and index.
Physical Description: xiii, 313 p. : ill.
Subject: The arts: general issues; Exhibition catalogues & specific collections; History of art; Art museums Philosophy.; Museology & heritage studies; Art museums Social aspects.; Art Exhibition techniques.; Art and Design.
Reproduction: Electronic reproduction. Askews and Holts. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Other formats: Also available in printed form ISBN 9780822336945