OTTAWA – Darcy Chen’s first visit to the National Gallery of Canada quickly became sidetracked by the appearance of a mystery woman whose subtle head movement indicated she knew more about art than possibly anyone ever.
“I looked at her and immediately was like, wow, this woman just gets it”, said Chen, recalling the way the woman knowingly tilted her head to the side as she admired a nearby painting. “I mean, she was wearing tortoise shell glasses for god’s sake!”
Witnesses stated that the woman wandered leisurely through the gallery, taking her time to stare at the various pieces. “You could tell she saw things that a regular buffoon like me couldn’t comprehend. At one point she slid her glasses down her nose just a bit while looking at a painting and I got chills,” said Chen. “I just knew she understood Picasso’s cubist era.” The woman eventually amassed a crowd of onlookers so large that she unknowingly started leading a tour through the gallery.
“She’s clearly very well-versed”, said museum curator Alisa Fortin. “She had all the vocabulary down – as we all know, head tilt means ‘Art Good’, an audible ‘huh’ means ‘Art Bad’, and a hand tucked under the chin means ‘Art Make Brain Kinda Hurt’.” Fortin says that they are working on providing more workshops for museum attendees to cover these key tenets of art critique.
Other museum staff members similarly mentioned their regard for the museum goer, with guide Bryce Montague noting how easily she navigated the museum. “She knew exactly where the bathrooms were without asking anyone, so she definitely comes in here to look at art frequently”, said Montague, amazed. “But hell, if she had accidentally wandered into the restricted sections, I don’t think any of us would have stopped her. I actually encouraged her to touch the paintings. It was like being blessed by the Pope.”
Near the end of her visit, the mystery woman was approached with an offer of a managerial position by the museum’s director, who themselves received their position by wearing a beret into the gallery.