WESTERN AMERICANA: TAM HAUB COLLECTION
I wanted to wait till all the dust settled before spouting off all my opinions and recount on the new wing of the Tacoma Art Museum (TAM) and their new look that ruined my morning commute so many times during the Summer because of all the construction.
So it was only appropriate that we show up on one of the opening nights to reap the benefits of a beautiful new wing attached to a focal point in the downtown community. Even before the Haub family donated their collection and a ridiculous lump sum of money, TAM has held quality exhibits and garnered enough respect to pull people from Gig Harbor, Bremerton, Federal Way and Seattle into lil ole Tacoma. Thanks to the amazing people at Post Defiance and Jason Gamboa (Creative Director of T.A.C.) eTc slid in the door camera ready - but first the refreshments table. They were serving marinated chicken skewers, finger sandwiches and local brew among other things.
There were many pillars of the ever growing art community and plently of them came dressed in garb with respect to nights theme 'The New West', so there were plently of cowboys hats, boots and shirts with color patterns, western yokes and snap buttons. All of which seemed very appropriate when paired with a western inspired photo backdrop people took photos in front of to commemorate the night and the line dancing and folk band in the back half of the museum. The mood was set and attendance was high.
Before entering the Haub Collection there is a bench filled seating area cycling an interview of the Haub family and important faces behind TAM on a big screen as they explain the journey behind bring the new wing to fruition and why this first exhibit was so impactful and extensive. We waited to the end to watch it - and immediately we dug into the sculpture area first and then got lost in the colorful desert plains and plently of wild buffalo paintings. While all of the pieces did have some sort of emotional connection after you read the blurb about their origins, it was a piece featuring a Native American man holding a buffalo skull while surrounded by a few others and apparently shrieking that really hit home when the literature on it explained how terrible of a misinterpretation it was playing on the culture and what would have actually happened. It hit home as a well welcomed reminder that art and history are and will always be a distortion of human perception and that human perception differs with each pair of eyes.
Here is how the night went via the camera lens: