Are Museums Loosening Restrictions on Photography?
Modern times bring modern influences on art. Projections and high quality sound systems have brought new ways for us to experience ait. New preservation and restoration techniques have allowed old art to be seen in new ways. And now there is another modern trend influencing the art world – the “selfie”.
A “selfie” is a photograph of yourself, usually done with a cell phone camera. How is a self snapshot affecting art? Well, galleries and museums all over the world are coming to terms with the fact that people who view art sometimes also want to be viewed viewing it. So, they take a picture of themselves in front of the piece.
Of course, photography is traditionally a huge no-no for museums for fear of damage or copyright infringement. But a few are loosening up and allowing such photos to be taken.
Why? First of all, it is difficult to stop. Cameras and phones are getting smaller and harder to detect. Second, the photos are almost always intended for personal use. That college student taking a selfie in front of “American Gothic” is posting it to Facebook, not selling it as a reproduction. Third, pictures actually help spread the word and get more people to the museum. Why discourage free advertising?
While a few museums are sticking to their guns, many are beginning to allow photography. And so, one more modern trend is leaving its footprints on the world of art.