Mark Dion is not your typical artist. He is not well known for his paintings, or creating any physical art, but rather for sculpting his works through ideas and creative collaborations with some of the largest institutions worldwide.

Dion has established himself as a forward thinking contemporary artist who can look at a museum’s collection and arrange it in a way that is often fun and thought provoking for visitors.

To put it simply, he’s an artist of thought.

That’s what makes Mark Dion so intriguing, he is able to present entirely new perspectives by simply arranging objects in a specific way. These perspectives often shed the light on new ways to think and process the world around us.

Now showing at the Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) is Dion’s “Marvelous Museum” which mounts “an unprecedented expedition through the Museum’s art, history, and natural science collections.”

The OMCA explains that “conceptual artist Mark Dion will create multiple site-specific installations and interventions throughout the art galleries, drawing upon the overlooked orphans, curiosities, and treasures from the collections. Many of these objects date back to OMCA’s predecessor institutions (a baby elephant, a sled used in a nineteenth century Arctic expedition, an elaborately decorated hornbill skull, a snuff bottle collection, and much more) and, while they often lie outside of OMCA’s California focus, still tell a rich and captivating story of how museum collections are assembled over time.”

OMCA Senior Curator of Art René de Guzman curates this first major West Coast presentation of Dion’s work.

The Oakland Museum of California is at the forefront of changing the way collections are presented. Bringing fresh change to the established norm, the OMCA creates an environment of both interactivity and education – something we’d like to see from more museums.

The “Marvelous Museum” is chance to view Dion’s genius up close and personal. Make plans to see this, it’s fresh, new, and exciting.

– Warholian

Visit the OMCA:

Shot and edited by Michael Cuffe of
Sound Design by John Holiday
Music by Fragile State