I’ll be honest, I waffled on making a post like this, because I don’t view MAX FAQs as my personal blog. It was never my intent to use this site to write about personal things in my life that have nothing to do with rail, because non-rail topics and personal stories aren’t the scope of what I want to cover in here – I think that sort of thing is irrelevant. I want to keep this blog as more of a factual “This is how this or that thing at rail works” and not post personal things unrelated to rail operation.
So when it comes to something that’s totally subjective like art appreciation, I wasn’t sure that was an appropriate topic to write about here since it’s a matter of personal opinion if art is “good.” However, since this involves proposed art for the Park Ave MAX light rail station in Milwaukie, I suppose it technically falls into this blog’s domain. And personally, I don’t know, I’m having a hard time seeing the artistic merit of Uncanny Bambi over here…
I look at that and I see this:
Now you could argue that I’m just too lowbrow to appreciate art, and you might be right. In my defense, I’m not anti-art on rail platforms – I like the feathers at Gateway, the entirety of Washington Park, the Expo gates, etc (though I’m still not sold on the Rockwood Sunrise). I also like the Swedish subway art. But I personally don’t find this sculpture aesthetically pleasing.
Maybe part of my negative reaction comes from spending $250,000 on a giant deer with a human face at the same time that fares are going up and buses are falling apart, and poor Dorothy is out of luck after the bond measure failed. I understand that there was a mandatory art budget for the Orange Line so money is going to be spent on art anyway, but so far the reaction to this particular piece seems overwhelmingly negative – the other proposed pieces aren’t having nearly the same kind of reaction. I guess I just hope that the art budget is ultimately spent on things that people want to see at their platforms.