A Digital Art Museum for the Time of Covid-19
As museums around the world (or, most of them, anyway) remain closed, and a once-global calendar of openings and festivals continues to migrate online in the ongoing pandemic, one new “museum” has seen a surge in visitors. Since launching, in March, @covidartmuseum—started on Instagram by three Barcelona-based art directors, Emma Calvo, Irene Llorca, and Jose Guerrero—has become something of a virtual destination, already amassing more than 110,000 followers. “These days, Covid-19 has jeopardized the entire system, causing the quarantine of millions of people,” they write. “This time of pause and reflection is allowing people to unlock their inner creativity. We are witness to the birth of a new artistic movement: the art in times of quarantine.” Each of the featured works, submitted by users from all over the world with the hashtag #covidartmuseum, responds to the isolation and grief attendant to living through a global pandemic: visuals filled with surgical masks and gloves, surreal videos and collages depicting escapist fantasies, new-fangled hairstyles and home décor schemes fashioned in our newfound downtime. All occupy some place along the spectrum of optimism, absurdist satire, and existential dread, and, together, form a portrait of human resilience and a shared instinct to connect through creativity.