Even though The American Folk Art Museum in New York City is only two rooms, there is a lot of information packed within those walls. But a plus is that it is “pay as you wish” admission, so for as little as a dollar, visitors can have access to recent American history.
Admittedly though, there is something to be said about museums that do not allow photography. It makes it hard to write about the subject of art in great detail without perpetual vagueness.
Until December 1, 2014, there are two exhibits taking place. The first one is from Ralph Fasanella entitled “Lest We Forget”. This exhibit took up the most of the museum as it covered recent eras of social issues in the United States. It was able to convey its description through the display of oil paintings on canvas. The things that stood out the most about the paintings was how detailed the paintings were, not only in the social issue it was describing itself, but also the colors, how certain things inside the painting stood out more. In many of his paintings, there was buildings of New York City and one that even had a panoramic view of a few of the boroughs. While most of his work seemed to center around New York City, there was one particular painting that stood out as it was more wide scale due to its times. The painting centered around the White House. At the bottom, certain boxes were created to highlight different events around the country, including the Kent State shootings and the Kennedy assassination. There was also a few caskets draped with the American flag. This may have symbolized soldiers dying in Vietnam during tis infamous war period throughout American history.
The second exhibition was from Willem van Genk entitled Mind Traffic. Mind Traffic is defined by the brain not calming down when things pop into focus repeatedly as the thoughts are like the cars on the freeway. His exhibit showed that as it had a variety of things in there. One wasll was lined with rain coats, for example, as he liked to collect rain coats through his life. There was a small glass case of train sculptures. There was a big painting of a Time magazine. He looked at his collections as ways to have and reflect on information throughout the years. As time went on, he would just collect more, as the cycle repeated with the rain coats.
Both displays were interesting. It is also interesting in a way to notice the different thoughts the two artists had. One was dealing with the visible and invisible aspects of social issues. The other dealt more with the more material of the visible and invisible.