Similar to tastes in movies, I think everyone has genres of art media that aren't their favorites. Syracuse's art museum had that problem for me, but if you enjoy ceramics where the vast majority is brown earthenware, often in bizarre, non-functional designs, then you're going to have a much more positive perspective. There were a fair number of cases of beautiful painted china and porcelain vases and glassware including ancient Etruscan, Egyptian and Chinese pieces and vintage pieces from historic Syracuse-area factories, but you will have to hunt for them in the sea of earth-tone pottery. It might have helped if they had signs explaining what the ceramists were trying to do, and that lack of information was more glaring in their contemporary painting gallery. Ditto for their photography gallery. Their modern art room focused on massive colorfield canvases, one by Helen Frankenthaler, and that room had better explanatory signage. However, if you're not a fan of Mark Rothko-type blocks of color, then that's basically all they have. (Their children's interest exhibit included a cartoon video of a cute journalist puffin interviewing Matisse, but...does the museum have a Matisse? I didn't see one.) On the other hand, they had an incredible antique vase from the Napoleonic era in their one gallery dedicated to antique art along with some paintings by 18th century American artists - good job with the signs there, too. Their atrium is also very pretty (particularly the curved staircase) and the installation of "window box flowers" made from shopping mall packing materials is lovely and the creativity put a smile on my face. Wouldn't go far out of my way for this museum unless you have a love for ceramics, but if you're in the area, it's worth a short stop.
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