Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Being a Busybody


I just came across an interview with Maira Kalman (conducted, via phone, while she was at a museum), whose history-oriented work for the NY Times has enchanted me on those mornings when it appears.  So how does she find inspiration?
As an illustrator and a writer, I’m in a sense a journalist. And my work is about reporting to you what I see and what I’m thinking and what other people are thinking.

So being curious is a completely natural part of it, and being a busybody, and wanting to know what people are doing, and why, and how it works. And why are you wearing those shoes? And what’s that hole puncher for? The nature of curiosity is both about how people live their lives and about the bigger picture of how the world works.
Isn't that what we, in our best times as museum people do? Encourage that curiosity about how people live their lives and the bigger picture of how the world works?

2 comments:

Kathy said...

I know that Maira also has a great love for museums, because she worked with us at the Rosenbach on a project for the Lincoln Bicentennial last year (check out her work at www.21stcenturyabe.org)One thing she really gets is the coolness of objects as objects--her work with us incorporated not only historical information, but also a fascination with old typefonts and signatures and places, which made it come alive.

Linda Norris said...

Hi Kathy--

Thanks so much for your comment--had looked at the abe blog a while ago, but was so nice to visit it again--and to pay more attention to Maira's work there--and I'm definitely jealous that you got to work with her! I look forward to my next visit to the Rosenbach next time I'm in Philly.