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The Vault: Barton Lidice Beneš

July 9 – Aug. 1, 2021

The Vault

Barton Lidice Beneš, <i>Directions of a Personality</i>, 1964. Bequest of the Estate of Dr. Victor DuBois.

Barton Lidice Beneš, Directions of a Personality, 1964. Bequest of the Estate of Dr. Victor DuBois.

This work was selected by Grace McKeon (Class of 2022), who explains: “Pieces like Directions of a Personality tend to stand out to me because of the classic 1960s imagery. I am interested in typography and posters from this era, and I love how artists from this time never seemed to shy away from intense color and shapes. As a graphic design major, I find myself taking inspiration from works like this in projects of my own. I believe that the bright orange and gold stripes represent the inner workings of one’s mind, while the neutral faces show their personal reality, and how they present themselves. The dreamlike colors seem to float around the faces, as if they are “looking” to discover their place in this stagnant world, which conflicts with the current state of their emotions. This artwork visually communicates an internal struggle and allows the viewer to interpret the piece based on their own personal experiences. The size of the work combined with the composition heightens these feelings of becoming engulfed by emotion.”

The Vault

The Vault, which also houses some of the works from our permanent collection, is dedicated to featuring and displaying works chosen by MSU students who work at the museum. Each month, one of our student gallery guides selects a piece from our collection and writes a short text explaining why they chose it and believe it should be displayed. By providing our gallery guides with an opportunity to participate in the curatorial process of selection and display, we aim to open a dialogue with the student community while simultaneously sharing with the public works from the collection that would otherwise remain in storage.