Can’t Believe Guggenheim Gets Art Delivered Like a Pizza

The Guggenheim (or the Gugglyheim as I fondly refer to it as) got a little lunchtime delivery today –  a big piece of art! I thought these precious, million-dollar things were wrapped in plain paper and trucked to their destination via a covert thief-evading route – or may that’s just in the movies. This painting (is it a Miro?) is only clad in plastic wrapping and the 2 handlers look about as professional as the college stoners Iused to hire to move my Ikea furniture in a minivan.

Picture endowed to me by Dr. Lauren!

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16 responses

  1. Perhaps they had to make some cutbacks in light of the recession. No more secret armored transport.

    OR maybe that’s the decoy. The real one will be delivered via the underground tunnel that connects with the Pentagon.

    1. Brilliant, Ray! I like that storyline much better.

  2. That was meant for my apartment at 15 CPW.

  3. oh boy boy what a risky business, maybe they think they can easily fix it if something happens to the painting, you know just a paint brush away! hahaha

  4. Firstly, I would just like to say that I was an art handler for several years in New York City, and you sound like one of infinitely mindless, hoards of stupid yuppies that us IKEA looking movers would affectionately remark about as being pathetic trend followers that congregate around museums. You sit there on your ass, taking pictures with your iphone, making assumptions about the people moving the art. Your ignorance about how the art is wrapped is furthered by the fact that I can tell you in all likelihood probably have milky white hands that have never seen a hard day of labor, and that is just my assumption based on your pointless post about Madonna’s apartment and Lady Gaga. (Who cares!!!) The way the art is wrapped is determined by the client, who was most likely the Guggenheim or a third party that owns it, not the art handlers. And secondly, after more closely examining your photo, it is not just in plastic, it is in a wooden T-Frame where it sits recessed behind the plastic in a pine wood frame where the edges of the art are safely suspended.
    If you don’t like the way it’s being handled, get a job on the trucks and offer your own useless expertise, but you probably wouldn’t last a week.

    1. Hahaha woww… so I guess you probably wouldn’t want to know my opinions about people who rant and rave on strangers’ blogs for no useful purpose but to defend their fragile egos. I only skimmed your comment but I really do appreciate the informative behind-the-scene bits – Thank You, Jstark.

      1. It is rather insulting to compare those art handlers to “college stoners”. Would you prefer they be dressed in $3000 suits? Many a post-college graduate starts in art handling and you clearly aren’t in the art industry (or, most likely, any industry) as your comment indicates a quick movement to judge and lack of understanding. And, as you have a blog, which one assumes you’d want people to read, you must expect a stranger or two to “rant and rave” on your site and/or bring up a point of contention to a marginalizing statement.

    2. I actually don’t expect such anger-filled rant & raves — but I certainly do like marveling at the spectacle as if I’m peering through the glass at the frozen life-like dioramas at the Natural History Museum.

      **PLEASE NOTE: I am NOT purporting to be a natural historian. For the hardworking anthropologists & bone diggers in New York City, please do not take insult in my lack of knowledge of your industry. If only I had my own industry, I would only blog about that!

      1. SOMEONE TOOK THE TIME TO REPLY TO YOU. READ IT.

        I have also been an art-handler and art-registrar for years in New York. Upon examination of this photo, I see NOTHING negligent here. The artwork is secured, floating inside what is called a travel frame. This is industry standard transport to go on a truck. Nothing touches the surface or edges of the painting. In addition, there is strapping across the face of the travel frame to hold the plastic away from the surface, while the plastic that goes all the way around the travel frame ensures that rain or moisture cannot reach the artwork. It travels secured on a dedicated art truck, like this one from Atelier 4, which has nothing but artwork in the back, strapped in during transport. Here, they have coned off a dedicated unloading zone. There is a representative of the museum in the foreground, and the piece is never without an art-handler holding it, just in case, until it is safely delivered.

        Once upon a time, I delivered pizza to pay my way through college, and it was NOTHING like this.

  5. Hi Doanie,

    Despite the “ranting” by JSTARK, he/she is correct on how the painting is being transported. It is perfectly safe in its present state. Appearances can be deceiving as well. Just because someone is not dressed in high fashion it does not mean they are not doing their jobs correctly and accurately.

    I would also like to mention the abuse and sub-standard working conditions in many art institutions. Art handlers are constantly demeaned and taken advantage of. Very few positions offer benefits, and it is an extremely tasking job physically and mentally in some cases. There are many logistical problems that have to be solved by those with many years of experience, not just “stoned college kids”.

    I agree that is funny sometimes to make witty and sarcastic observations on other people working. Believe me, I do the same, but when doing it in the public’s eye I hope that you will do some research before you jump on the bandwagon to berate honest working people for doing their jobs. Imagine if someone were to enter your place of work and take a picture of you, and even though you were doing your job correctly, they publicly slandered you.

    Be careful you could get sued by those in the picture you published.

    Cheers,

    Ari

    1. Ok, now I may get sued?? Honestly people, if you knew me in real life you’d know I am incredibly sensitive, sympathetic and self-aware. I feel bad that a silly comment I made on a photo that I didn’t take, is upsetting you 3 so much. My blog isn’t about explaining things in detail – in fact, it’s about boiling a story or an idea down into the least amount of words as possible. This wasn’t a post about art handlers or movers, it was a post about me wondering what’s going on in the pic. I mean, is it even a Miro? I don’t know.. because I do not pretend to be an expert & I did not do any research. But I don’t have to– because this is my blog.

      Ari, I really do appreciate you shedding light on the truth behind this snapshot – the working conditions, the amount of expertise required. If this is truly information that needs to be taught to other unknowing people, like me, then I am glad this has been a venue for you to speak the truth.

      PS. I just realized why all these ‘strangers’ have been commenting on my little blog today – it’s been posted on Gothamist!
      http://gothamist.com/2010/01/26/guggenheim_2.php

  6. Hi Doanie,

    Perhaps you did not mean to start a fire storm with your comments. That being said there are some very good reasons people are upset at you.

    1. You used a picture that identifies someone in the art handling profession and then professed this quote which is both slanderous and erroneous:

    “This painting (is it a Miro?) is only clad in plastic wrapping and the 2 handlers look about as professional as the college stoners Iused to hire to move my Ikea furniture in a minivan.”

    2. Don’t you think that someone at the Guggenheim is going to use the internet? And when they stumble upon this blog, or if they were already reading it for other reasons, won’t they be mad about the bad press? Especially now that it is on Gothamist which is read by quite a few people? How would you feel if you were in charge of operations at the Guggenheim? Or if you are the donor of that art work?

    People can get fired for this regardless if they are doing their job correctly.

    3. When the JSTARK wrote in to the blog you completely blew him off. That doesn’t seem in congruence with your statement in the about section of the blog. “It is my tireless duty to know what’s going on, figure out why people do what they do, and then pass that info on to you. Whether you want it or not.”

    People get annoyed when you first offend someone by commenting on a profession and then act blase about their outrage.

    4. For better or for worse blogs have become part of mainstream media. When you say something on a blog it is no longer for vast void in outer internet space, it is part of the public domain. So when you say someone is doing a bad job, while providing a photo that identifies a particular person, whether you meant it or not, it creates a backlash.

    All the best,

    Ari

    1. Please don’t worry Ari – no one will get fired over my blog post.. promise 🙂

      I appreciate everyone’s input on the real story behind that photo.

      Btw, if this post is really upsetting to any of you out there in the anonymous bloggyworld, by all means please cease reading my blog! No need to get yourself worked up/stressed out..

      1. Dear Doanie-
        you seem pretty insincere to me. first you make flippant comments about a profession and industry you clearly do not understand or have any exposure to. Then when people try to inform and correct you, you dismiss them, or at least JSTARK, calling his justifiably terse response to your unfortunate comments, rants. You further go on to say that while you appreciate people reading your blog and responding, that they should also cease reading you. But previous to that comment you make a point to profusely thank another commenter for his correction of your comments and of informing you about your mistaken impressions.

        I guess I’m just a little confused. It seems you do want people to read your blog, you are clearly excited about it being reposted on Gothamist, you are responding to many different people on here, yet you seem not to understand why people are responding the way they are, which makes it seem, frankly like you could care less about what people have to say, in reality.

        I would suggest you go back and really read JSTARK’S comment and actually try to understand why your insults about his industry upset him as he is clearly a professional in the art handling world.

        Please try to understand why I am confused about your lack of an appropriate response to all of this.
        Did you ever think that maybe you should simply apologize, since clearly you were very off target with, from what it seems, 100% of your observations?

        I guess I just wish you could have: 1. made your post. 2. taken to heart the responses, and 3. responded appropriately to the factual reality of those responses, rather than continue to be alternately sacharin and flippant about this whole thing.

  7. Are you an art handler? No?
    I like your blog!

  8. I think that you may have just invented a new sport.

    Put an Innocuous comment on the web and see how many people get irrate.

    Lets call it Idiot Fishing.

    Keep blogging.

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