We know what we like, and it's not modern art! How gallery visitors only viewed work by Damien Hirst and Tracy Emin for less than 5 seconds
To read the entire article by Philip Hensher, CLICK HERE
The Daily Mail decided to view how long visitors at the Tate Britain looked at certain works in their collection with interesting results.
"The basic fact about art is that you, the viewer, decide how much time you're going to give it. Other art forms give you no choice.
A symphony is going to take up 40 minutes of your time; a film two hours; a play perhaps three or four hours. But you can choose whether to look at a painting for ten seconds or ten minutes. That's a good measure of how interested you are by it.
We wondered whether there was a difference between the amount of time people were prepared to give a classic painting, and to modern art."
"We set up that simple test. We spent a day sitting in front of four classic paintings, and the works of four famous contemporary British artists.
We counted how many visitors stopped at each; for how long, on average, they spent looking at each work; what the longest examination was; and what sort of gallery visitor each work seemed to attract.
surprisingly, despite all the controversy, and the public promotion of new British artists, they did less well in this test than the 18th and 19th Century artists.
Tracey Emin's Monument Valley (Grand Scale) is an image of the artist, sitting in an armchair in a famous American landscape. No one looked at it for more than two minutes; if people did look at it, it was for five seconds on average. And most visitors did not look at it at all.
Though Damien Hirst's famous pickled animals do seem to interest visitors, one example - the 'spot' paintings that form such a large part of his work - might as well have been wallpaper. Our sample spent, on average, less than five seconds looking at it."
The implication of the results of this survey of gallery-goer's apathy, the Daily Mail contends is something that professional curators might like to ponder.
Ophelia: by Sir John Everett Millais
TOTAL VIEWERS: 562 AVERAGE DWELL TIME: 1 minute, 57 seconds LONGEST LOOK: 30 minutes
Monument Valley: by Tracey Emin
TOTAL VIEWERS: 177 AVERAGE DWELL TIME: 5 seconds LONGEST LOOK: 2 minutes
Anthraquinone -1 Diazonium Chloride: by Damien Hirst
TOTAL VIEWERS: 379 AVERAGE DWELL TIME: 5 seconds LONGEST LOOK: 30 seconds