'Hot oil shuffle...'

Art Stuart Jeffries absolutely nails the issue to do with big exhibitions and why I tend to shy away from private views. I like art and want to see it properly without five thousand other people getting in the way:
The National Gallery warns visitors to the Caravaggio show: "Due to the popularity of the exhibition there will be timed-ticket entry. We recommend booking in advance to ensure that your visit is on the date and at the time of your choice." It doesn't add, but perhaps it should: "And if you're thinking of standing in front of a picture for more than an hour, you can just forget about that kind of nonsense, sonny."
Unlike other art forms, painting and sculpture take time -- there needs to be an unspoken dialogue between the viewer and the work. That simply can't happen if you're dodging people who are just there so that they can say they've been there. Which effectively means you end up going to exhibitions like this one, because they're inevitably empty. Shocking.

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