Tim Burton at the MoMA
The MoMA's Current Exhibition: Tim Burton's Artwork
Never have we waded through a more jam-packed gallery at the Museum of Modern Art than at this blockbuster show over the long Thanksgiving weekend. But now that the holiday-season hordes have gone back to their homes in Wichita and Osaka and Buenos Aires and Bruges, and it's safe once again to visit our beautiful city's beautiful museums, we made a second visit to see what all the fuss was about. And though we still think it all feels a little more Planet Hollywood (or Forbidden Planet, for that matter) than MoMA art show–look: Batman's cowl! Beetlejuice's head! a statue of Johnny Depp as Edward Scissorhands!–it is easier to appreciate Tim Burton's artwork, which includes drawings, photographs and sculptural pieces, now that the crowds have thinned a bit.
Tim Burton must have nearly emptied whatever spooky secret laboratory he labors in to fill the MoMA exhibition: there are more than 700 separate pieces of artwork on display here, in the museum's sculpture garden (a deer topiary right out of Edward Scissorhands) and in the lobby (the 21-foot, five-eyed, inflatable "Balloon Boy"); and crammed into every bit of available wall- and floor-space in the MoMA?s Special Exhibitions Gallery on the third floor, and, if you seek a quieter environment to view your cartoonish creepiness, in the lobbies of the MoMA's two theaters, where a retrospective of Tim Burton's films–Tim Burton and the Lurid Beauty of Monsters–is also being shown.
There's a clever series of photographs involving a dog and some antlers in the Museum of Modern Art theater’s most subterranean lobby that we liked, and many of Tim Burton's drawings of random monster-children made us smile (his captions are often witty and frequently charming), and it's fun to see the raw creative thinking–often doodles on notepaper, or even napkins–from which his Hollywood multiplex vehicles emerged. In the end, however, there's a definite sameness to Tim Burton's vision, and even with fewer people to elbow through to see everything that the exhibition has to offer, we felt like it was all a bit much.
Tim Burton at the MoMA Details
The Tim Burton exhibition will be on display at the Museum of Modern Art through April 26th, 2010. The MoMA is open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday from 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and on Friday until 8:00 p.m., when admission is free after 4:00 p.m. Closed Tuesdays. Click here for much more information on MoMA’s art collections and exhibitions.
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