Now that I have said all the pluses about the new Seattle Art Museum, I have to address the exploding cars. The installation by Cai Guo Qiang suspends nine white Ford Taurus ( tauri?), from the ceiling of the entrance hall ( that tells you how big it is). My first thought was
long taut lines of blinking LED lights start from the center of the cars, alternating red, green, blue on lines of lights that end in a cluster of lights in a small bursting pattern A video shows a car being exploded and there is the exploded car in the gallery as the other half of the work.
Come on folks, this is 2007 and people are being killed everyday with suicide car bombs in Iraq. How can this not be a reference to that
One other press person I asked said no, it reminded him of latinos who like their cars ( he was from LA), or an amusement park ride, another said no, "burning man" ( he does burning man).
Flashing lines of light that end in a burst of light.
coming out of a car
That's an explosion.
How does Cai get away with people declaring it anything else.
It tells you about how people see.
The director obviously wasn't reminded of impending death, but declared it as a way to attract children.
What's wrong with this picture??
PS At the Educators opening, hundreds of people were happily partying under the exploding cars. That is, apparently, the artists real point - we are oblivious to the violence.