Sunday, February 27, 2011

Architecture at the Grand Rapids Art Museum

The Grand Rapids Art Museum historically has not allowed cameras inside. That's always annoyed me, since it is such a nice building with plenty of opportunities for great photographs of the architecture. It seems they've finally changed their minds.

The museum has sponsored talks on Friday nights for quite a while. Usually they have something to do with an exhibit of work that's currently being shown. February has been photography, in conjunction with an exhibit of portraits by Dawoud Bey. Hopefully more on the exhibit in a later post.

This past Friday the sponsored talk was about the architecture of the museum and how to photograph it. I jumped at the chance and attended. My friend Sam also attended, though he was smart enough to bring a tripod. The turnout surprised the speaker, there were easily 75 people there. People were trying to photograph using anything from a point and shoot camera to a DSLR. The speaker, whose name I can't remember at the moment, gave a short talk about camera settings and handed out a sheet with some info and a scavenger hunt. We then walked through the parts of the museum we had access. The third floor was off limits since they were tearing down the just closed Princess Diana exhibit and we could not photograph certain pieces of art.

The speaker really didn't do much with the scavenger hunt, she suggested a couple of photographic types to satisfy the first couple of entries, but that was it. Other than that it was fun to photograph the architecture without getting hassled by the security guards.

The evening went fast. Between the talk and looking at the exhibits, the museum closing time came fast. That was the bad part. I'll just have to go back. The good part was I learned the museum has relented on it's photography policy and now lets cameras into the museum. I'll have to go back with the camera and make sure that's true.

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