What Is Beyoncé Doing in a Museum? | Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, Jerusalem

What Is Beyoncé Doing in a Museum?

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In October 2014, the singer Beyoncé and her husband, the rapper Jay Z, visited the Louvre Museum in Paris. In order to make it known to the entire world they rushed to put their photo on Instagram. The photo was taken next to the Mona Lisa, painted by Leonardo De Vinci in the 16th century (photo 1).

And so, three cultural heroes met and wandered together in the internet. This photo made history as a result of the number of responses it got. The viewers were not indifferent and reacted via memes.

Almost four years later, In June 2018, the two asked the management of the museum to shoot the clip for their new song, Apeshit. This time they were photographed with no less than 17 masterpieces, beginning.
Since then the museum offers visitors an hour and an hour and a half tour that follows the pieces of art brought to life by Beyoncé and Jay Z in their video art. On days when the museum is closed, they offer a
virtual tour

To join the virtual tour

The interesting question is why these two (who have everything and in particular world fame) need the museum? And more than that, why does the museum (which also has everything including world fame) need them?

Well, the museum- one of the most important in the world- supplies them with the glory of "high", "classic" culture, and bind their art to the canonic list of masterpieces. And they in turn, help the museum reach new crowds and attract people who normally will not bother going there. It seems like this is a clear case of the various faces of visual culture that combine masterpieces from the history of art ( in the fields of drawing, sculpting, architecture and their derivatives) together with contemporary popular images, museums, social media, installations and presentations, stills and video, graphical novels and comics, graffiti and caricatures, computer games, interactive interfaces and applications, commodities, household items, clothing,  fashion accessories, street signs and advertising posters.

In the Department of Visual and Material Culture, we get to discuss, analyze and understand masterpieces and contemporary popular images and all that lies between them.


Dr. Naomi Meiri- Dan
Lecturer in the Department of Visual and Material Culture