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Worthy to be Seen – Marquita – Medium


A painting is not all you see at the museum.

The museum is a place to see things deemed worthy of seeing. You walk around for hours observing, wondering, and trying to enter the mind of the artist. Why did they make this? What were they feeling? And if you are anything like me, you wonder, were they as broken as I feel right now?

My body spends many days pacing up and down the halls of famous museums. Each time I see Picasso’s paintings I wonder if his brush strokes carry the sadness I hold in my tiny frame. My soul empathizes with his disjointed faces and eyes and I think, that is an accurate depiction of how I feel. Lost and rearranged on a canvas, at the mercy of someone’s hand.

When I am not looking at a particular art piece, I sit on benches while people walk right past me. Sometimes I look at art and sometimes I just look ahead, trying to see if maybe the wooden walls are also part of this art installation and no one else is smart enough to see it. Only I can see the art in everything. It is those moments that I imagine, that I too am an exhibit, a thing to be seen and hidden simultaneously. And as I wander the halls of the museums, I wonder if I am worthy of being seen.

In New York City, it is easy to be invisible. People walk past you, turn the other way, or look at their phones. People watch you cry and to spare you embarrassment, turn so they do not have to acknowledge you. When you live here your whole life, you are used to not being seen. You avoid store windows, mirrors, and find ways to disengage. Engage too much and who knows, you might get lost.

But in the museum, time stops and the space I did not afford myself opens up. I become complex, hard to explain, and beautiful to see. I become art and finally worthy to be seen.

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