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Thoughts on a Portrait of the Artist by his Blind Daughter / Blind at the Museum

ben's picture

It seems like the plot of an ironic sitcom to have a visual artist and a daughter who is visually impaired, but this was the reality for Georgina Kleege. I thought it was really interesting to see the contrast between Georgina, a blind writer, and her father, an artist and a sculptor who valued what was visible much more than what could be said. I thought it was particularly interesting (and heartbreaking) towards the end, when her father became less and less capable of communicating with Georgina as he could say less and less with each breath, and their conversations were reduced to solely what was absolutely necessary. I also thought her description of this was really poetic, and found it sort of funny that that was immediately followed by her saying that he has always been more of a prose writer.


I think the idea behind Blind at the Museum is a really interesting one, especially in how it considers blindness and sightedness to exist on a spectrum, and not be two discrete and opposite thiings--an idea I had never considered until it was introduced to me by Kleege. The idea of both creating art that the blind can appreciate and art that conveys parts of blindness to sighted people is also one I liked, as well as having auditory art and tactile art and art that engages multiple senses rather than just sight. I think this is a good route to go when creating an art museum for the blind or about blindness, rather than what Kleege mentioned, where art museums had tours where blind viewers could maybe touch a few sculptures or something. This seems like a far more inclusive route to take, allowing blind museumgoers to appreciate the art and attempting to give sighted museumgoers a different experience than one they'd have at a traditional art museum.