Stendhal syndrome, Stendhal’s syndrome, hyperkulturemia, or Florence syndrome is a psychosomatic disorder that causes rapid heartbeat, dizziness, fainting, confusion and even hallucinations when an individual is exposed to an experience of great personal significance, particularly viewing art.
This past year, I’ve experienced this syndrome many times, mostly from going to art museums (e.g. Philly Bernes’ foundation, Boston fine art, NYC MOMA and Metropolitan, Seattle modern art and fine art, Chicago fine art, Bruxelles, Paris Louvre and Pompidou, London Tate, etc. ) plus museums of instruments, museums of pop culture, museums of science and technology, planetariums, aquariums, etc.
Let’s start with arts and leave others for another time. Here are some of my favourites:
I like surrealism the most. It’s always interesting to interpret them which usually gives people a new awareness and perspective of a personal or social problem. Impressionism paintings are very beautiful and I enjoy standing back and forth in front of the painting just try to see what’s actually on the painting and what we see. I also have a soft spot for painting about instruments or musicians. Exhibitions with new experimental materials also drew me in.
I remember the first time I went to an art exhibition is when I was about 15. I was disappointed by the random strokes and abstract shapes (it was a modern art exhibition :P). I clearly remembered that I thought (and probably as many other people would have thought): I can do that kind of scribble too. But the truth is, 10 years later, I haven’t even attempt any “serious” scribble and I can’t even find a daily life scribble which I want to present to someone else. And then it hit me, not only the technics, also the reason why “the scribble” exists, why it is here on this wall, is something interesting.
I interviewed a violinist who said the museums are her favourite places to go. It cultures sensitivity. The reason I tried the first few pricy museum was because of her words actually. But it’s so addictive! Museums are one of my favourite places to go when I got to a new city now 🙂 Going to the ones in Netherlands soon!
I don’t draw nor paint very much myself, either have I learnt any art history. So I hope my thinking is not on the “wrong” side. But I’ll definitely try to draw some more (maybe even post them sometimes yeah). And some other realisations might come in the future!