I often playfully think of the gallery space as having it's own unique presence. As such, imagine the rhythm the space might experience— from subtle to raucously celebratory. Much of the time the gallery is quiet. Lights off. Nothing happening with the exception of weather sounds working the building. Changes of light. Perhaps a mouse scampering through the crawl space. The work on the walls— so patient.
Add people— the lights come up, glasses clink with sparkling water and wine. Think of the play of light now! Photons stream from the track lights, bounce off the work through the pupils and into retinas of the viewers. Stimulation! Up through the optic nerve into the human brain where untold neural pathways cascade with activity. Meaning is made, even if it is not.
Gallery spaces are social spaces. We love gathering together and comparing notes. A friend suggested the whole experience is akin to ritual space. And indeed it is. The gallery is most content when people engage one another and the work. This live encounter is the fulfillment of the creative process.