What do you see when you look at art? Just another pretty picture? Or pretty statue, or photograph or drawing? It’s not always easy to tell what an artist is trying to say, and why.
LINE: Sometimes the art is in the museum, and sometimes the museum itself is the art. The roof of this museum’s courtyard is a kind of giant drawing. Designed by architect Norman Foster, it’s supposed to look like a puffy cloud floating over the building. Made from a steel grid that frames 864 glass windows — no two of which are alike — its wavy outline is not all that different from the wavy outline that you use when you draw clouds in art class. The only difference? This drawing weighs around 900 tons. Tim Hursley/Smithsonian American Art Museum Buy Photo