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VALERY, Paul. O Problema dos museus. ARS (São Paulo) [online]. 2008, vol.6, n.12, pp.31-34. ISSN 1678-5320.

The text from the poet and writer Paul Valéry (1871-1945) and originally published in 1931, brings to light his ambiguous feelings about modernity, feelings which are here remarkably revealed in the melancholic report he renders of a visit to the Louvre Museum, in which the poet confronts "waxen solitudes". The museum is, to Valéry, a dwelling for "dead visions", although being at the same time the most auspicious place, as noticed by Theodor Adorno in his essay "The Valéry-Proust Museum", for a critical perception of art in "our catastrophical reality". Both Valéry and Proust, Adorno argues, see the museum through the figure of death (in spite of their apparently antagonistic points of view), the deep experience of this death being, for them, the only way to unleash new possibilities to art in the present days.

Keywords : modernity; modern art; museums; Paul Valéry; Theodor Adorno.

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