Playing Favorites: Sydney Coyne & Anna Arter

We’ve asked FWMoA staff the hardest question you can ask art museum people: so, what is your favorite artwork currently on display? As “art museum people”, we often get asked about our favorite artists, artworks, and the art we choose to hang on our own walls. Since not all of our staff are front-end, and not all of them write for the blog, this series gives everyone a chance to get to know them, too. Taking advantage of our rotating exhibitions of artworks, from painted portraits to sculpted bronzes, FWMoA staff from all departments are choosing artworks that enthrall and enchant them; or, in other words, playing favorites.

A photograph of Sydney Coyne, smiling and looking into the camera.
Sydney Coyne, Education Intern. Photo courtesy of FWMoA.

We assigned our Education Intern, Sydney Coyne, to roam the FWMoA galleries and find an artwork that spoke to her. Staying loyal to the department, she chose the Honorable Mention painting Relax by Anna Arter, a senior at Whitko High School

A painting of a woman reading alone in a diner. Her legs are pulled up onto the table and the room is a warm orange and blue with paintings and a guitar on the wall.
Anna Arter, Grade 12, Whitko High School, South Whitley, IN. Relax. Honorable Mention- Painting. Daniel Malicki, Educator. Image courtesy of Anna Arter.

Q: What is the first thing you noticed about this artwork? What drew you to this particular piece?

A: The first thing I noticed was the way that the person in the painting was sitting. It reminded me exactly of how I sit at home when I read! What drew me to this piece was that this is an experience I can fully relate to.

Q: Would you hang this artwork in your home? Why or why not?

A: I would love to hang this artwork in my home! The use of various colors on the walls and on the subject’s legs creates a sense of movement that feels calm and soothing.

Q: What does this artwork mean to you?

A: This artwork gives us a clue of what a relaxing moment looks like to the artist: sitting with their legs up and enjoying a book. Even if you aren’t a big bookworm yourself, you can still relate to the relief of having a moment of quiet and relaxation.

Q: Why did you choose to intern at an art museum?

A: I knew during my first AP Art History course in high school that I wanted to pursue a career that involved art in some way! After taking art history courses in college, I found that showing art to other people and teaching them about artists was something that I really loved!

Q: What has been your favorite exhibition at FWMoA during your internship?

A: My favorite was Breathing Life Into History: Contemporary Native American Art from the Collection!

See Sydney’s favorite work on display in the 2023 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards exhibition through April 8, 2023.

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