The philosophy Make Art, not War is one I grew up with. My parents were surrounded by artists, artists who worked obscurely at their crafts in the deserts of Northern New Mexico, artists who took a long time to make names for themselves, because things taking a long time is rather part and parcel of working in obscurity.

It was my destiny to make sure that my life was filled with art’s various forms – dance, music, theatre, photography, graphic design, writing and fine art.

In order to be sure I could fill my life with the energy of art, I aspired, conspired, schemed and planned to move to New York so that I could have endless choices of what to see, what to read, what to be influenced by.

I have met people who think that participating in the arts is a luxury and wonder why one needs it at all. After all, aren’t our basic needs food, shelter, water, clothing, a way to make a living?

But education is also a basic need, and having access to the arts is part of that education. Reading a book can make us think about something we either hadn’t thought of before, or don’t want to think about now, but may nonetheless be important for our growth.

A dance performance can enhance our sense of space, expand our sense of human interaction, give physical expression to emotions we feel but don’t have the physical graces to put into movement. Maybe we have two left feet. Maybe we’re a wee tad klutzy.

Music can express what we experience, but don’t have the lyrics or the voice to express in song ourselves.

And fine art can make us see the world, think about the world in ways we haven’t considered, can make us look at something we see every day in a completely new light. How does this impact us? If it does, is it a direct impact? Do we use this impact, absorb it, incorporate it into our lives? Does it filter in and make us better, more observant, more feelingful…perhaps better at our jobs, our relationships? 

Only if we let it. Only if we nourish it. Only if we encourage it and coax it out of its hiding place.

Such is how I have always felt about the work of Pablo Picasso, his habit of ‘rearranging’ the human body (frequently women), his habit of taking a bull, for instance, or a goat, or a chicken, and making you see the bull, the goat, the chicken in a way you’d never seen it before. Picasso disrupts our perception, shakes up of what we know, what we think we see or are used to seeing.

So…get a ticket for After Hours Access to the Picasso Sculpture Exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, lead by a museum curator and organized by Peer Platform for Art, which was formed in October 2014. This Sunday, January 24th, from 5:15-6:30, the Museum of Modern Art will close to the public and offer a private tour to Peer Platform participants.

When I saw the Picasso Sculpture show in December people were sitting around on the benches in the exhibition rooms listening to a talk about the exhibit on their headsets, and using the printed brochure as a guide to the works of art featured.

You can do the same or join up with Peer Platform and have an entirely different experience of Picasso. This is what Peer Platform does…every month at a museum, gallery, artist’s studio, or private institution and/or private collection. It costs a bit more money than just standing in line and getting a regular/student/senior ticket, but it’s worth it.

And you can take photographs. And post them. And share the experience with your friends. Museums are loosening up and sharing the love, which is important because so many people do not live in cities where they can experience something like this themselves. But there is the Internet. And social media…and, well, um…posting your favorite art shots.

Here is the Peer Platform FB page for more information:

The group’s tour of the Jeff Koons’ show at the Whitney Museum:

And here is the link to MoMA:

If you are in New York this Sunday, go. Do something you haven’t done before. Be inspired by something out of the normal. See this mind-blowing exhibition and the She-Goat, about which Picasso himself said:

“She’s more like a goat than a real goat, don’t you think?”

But…may I ask…what is real anyway?

#PicassoSculpture   #MuseumofModernArt   #PeerPlatformforArt