Friday, July 17, 2009
Culture Day in the ATL
For the last month+ we've been living out of suitcases, making the most of family time as we drag out our move from Georgia to Alexandria, Virginia. Last week was our final week with my mom, and we made Thursday a " culture day" by eating lunch at Chow Baby, visiting the "furniture district" of Chattahoochee Avenue, taking in the exhibits at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, and rounding out the day with ice cream at Morelli's. It was a swell way to round out our stay with my mom. Our time at the High proved to be blogworthy. We went to see Monet's Water Lilies, which are on loan from the Museum of Modern Art, New York. The three canvases spread out 42 feet and do take your breath away. The expansion wing of the High is a great place to view these works. I've always loved going to the High as it was originally, designed by Richard Meier. I've been in a few of his buildings, and to me, they are both whimsical and refined. But what Renzo Piano has done with the additional wing is just incredible. I love the transition from the old building, and Piano's addition is quiet, reverent to Meier's, and solidly stands on its own. And it's of course amazing what he did with natural light, which is what compliments the Monet pieces so well. My only complaint is that the exhibit was very small, except of course for the giant canvases. There were only a few other pieces, but I guess for the full effect I need to visit the MOMA or the Louvre. I should also note that all of the photos in this post were taken with my iPhone. And I wasn't sneaky about it- evidently cell phone cameras are allowed for these exhibits. Here's their policy: NOTE: Through August 23, 2009, cell phone photography will be permitted in the Monet Water Lilies and Richard Misrach: On the Beach exhibition galleries. Regular photography permits are not required for guests who wish to use cell phone cameras in these two galleries. Funny right? I don't think they'd want you using your cell phone to make calls, but its other purpose, as a camera, is allowed. Oh well. I snapped away, hoping at least some of my photos would be okay for the blog. I really enjoyed the Richard Misrach: On the Beach exhibit, but I didn't take any photos of that because it was a photography exhibit and taking photos of photos just seemed weird. I did like this quotation of his:One of the real gems of the day was an ARCHITECTURE EXHIBIT! I learned a little about Anthony Ames, an Atlanta architect who I am ashamed to say I had never heard of. The exhibit featured some of his paintings (inspired by the likes of Le Corbusier and Ozenfant), architectural models, and even dinnerware. Ames is known as a Late Modernist, which is fitting since his work was displayed in the Meier side of the museum. I loved seeing the models, but mostly I loved watching other people checking them out. My absolute favorite part of the day was the furniture exhibit, featuring American furniture from the colonial days to the early 20th century. I haven't found any real reference to these pieces on the museum's website, so I am not sure if they are part of the permanent collection or a traveling exhibit. I thought I saw a mention of this exhibit on Apartment Therapy? Anyone know what I am referring to? At any rate, it was mesmerizing to see pieces from some of the most famous designers in history all lined up. This is a chair from a Boston designer way way back. Love those ovals. I didn't take any notes on this one, but I'd guess it's more of a folk-arty chair with bent wood. This is a Frank Lloyd Wright chair. And a chair by Josef Hoffman. They are all so great, I can't decide which one is my favorite.Oh, and I almost forgot the Greene and Greene: It was quite a day of Atlanta fun, and we'll miss that! This week we've been staying with my in-laws in north Georgia, experiencing a much different part of the state and giving Rudy a few more days to swim and have the run of the land. The final stages of the move begin this weekend as we make our way up to D.C. We're staying with generous friends in Maryland next week until we can finally move in (for real this time) next weekend. Goodness me, this summer has been both long and short all at the same time.