A visit to Columbus

This artwork is in the Columbus Museum of Art.  It is an installation of 33 glass boats by Lino Tagliapietra, one of the world’s masters of art glass.  This view of it, this glimpse of one of its ends, is how we first approached the installation.  Its name is Endeavour.

In Chicago, the phrase “civic pride” usually is all about the cynical subtext, saluting projects crafted to funnel public money into private pockets.  Today, in Columbus, we have been hearing people use that phrase in a different way.  When they talk about civic pride, they are trying to indicate they are, get this, Chicago, proud of their town. They want to make it better for everyone there.  They mean it, too.

We have been seeing much the same thing in other Midwest cities, most notably Detroit – this quiet sense that this part of the world is a great place to be, and worth building up.  But here is the difference between here and other parts of the Midwest.  The level of thinking is the same – sophisticated, earnest, insightful – but in Columbus, the baseline is more solid.  Columbus, never having fallen, can just build.

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