Guadalajara, Mexico. Museo de Las Artes. White is a universal symbol of neutrality and objectivity. It creates the purified container and official "void" that surrounds contemporary art. It gives it authority.
Nothingness competes with nothing.
No matter how controversial the color choice or how custom-mixed the paint, white still changes in every aspect of light.
The purpose of white is to take away context. It's a cognitive rest that can be hypnotic, numbing.
White is used to "set off" the art. It also sets off the world outside.
It sets off architectural details. And like a graphic extension of the art itself, it sets off the museum's exhibition posters.
Museum graphic identities use "white space" like art & photography books, to create elegant spacious margins of emptiness. MUSA's logo plays with white in the negative shape of their building. It's a neutral space that intrudes just a bit into the art, to point at it.
White becomes a typographic object outside, to set off the red "a" of art.
Art museum stores extend the gallery experience, using white to "elevate" objects and make them precious.
I saw two interesting exhibitions here, but I found myself noticing other visitors a lot. If white allows us to see modern art without context, then the visitors also float around without context. Like the art, they are objects that stand out.
There is no real sense of privacy.
Visitor's behavior feels like a casually watched performance.
They contemplate the art
and also contemplate each other, peripherally.
Like kinetic figurative sculptures, moving, posing, moving, posing.