Friday, April 10, 2009

The Museum of Fred

The Museum of Fred, which describes itself as a time capsule, is a collection of magnificent artwork. As Fred explains, The paintings represented here were not created by well-known blue-chip artists. "They were created by ordinary people. For unknown reasons they were donated to thrift stores where I purchased them." Fred has migrated these artworks to a digital format in order to demonstrate the importance of ephemera to overall understanding of culture.

As Fred argues, the making of art is too important to be left to the art professionals.

The site itself is well designed and offers galleries organized by the subject matter of the artwork. Topics include wild animals, landscapes, pets, and portraits. Unfortunately, there is no metadata offered. It is understandable that it would be impossible to identify the artists, but it would have been beneficial to include information regarding the acquisition of the artifact. An additional problem arises with the quality of the images themselves--Fred selfishly keeps the images in a small and unenlargeable format. Although Fred maintains that he actively curates the site, and has since 2000, there is suspiciously little evidence of activity. Nonetheless, I love this website and think it is a great resource for people who are interested in outsider art or ephemera in general.

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