Thursday, February 01, 2007

Smithsonian (Washington, DC): Denied Again...

...the opportunity to see Mr. Bjork (aka artist Matthew Barney) and some lady from the Guggenheim speak for free at the Hirshhorn last night.

As had happened a few months ago, I arrived at the front door to join frozen, huddled masses who'd also arrived too late. The donors and board members were being seated first, they told me.

That's it? That's the donor special?

That ain't right, I thought.

I'm assuming that Smithsonian level of donor-hood involves more than a $35 check spurred by childhood memories of the Air and Space Museum. I'm assuming some serious coin is required.

So, if I was a donor contributing a chunk of change to host a famous avant garde artist, I'd expect a bit more than a free lecture open to all.

Where's my private VIP champagne reception? A personal portrait crafted from seaweed and discarded tubes of Preparation H? Formaldehyde suspension of a favorite deceased pet?

Because supporting the arts should have its privileges.

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At 4:14 PM, Anonymous katjjames said...

I think the part that slays me, is "donor" is never going to be the money you or I can afford to give, yet those who donate that kind of money probably don't even go to these things to learn. It's all about the show, baby.


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