Friday, May 20, 2016

Leaf, Ink, and Color

The next morning we walked through the Plaza to Starbucks before Mom and Dad had to get on the road.  Taylor and I wrapped everything up at the hotel then headed over to the Nelson Atkins Art Museum.  This is the second year in a row that I've gone to an art museum on my birthday -- I'm thinking that's a pretty good birthday tradition in the works!

Taylor had been several times before so he knew the layout and the best sections to see.  We started off in the contemporary wing, and it did not disappoint.  I was particularly attracted to these two large paintings.  The beautiful peach-orange one is titled Elberta, by Helen Frankenthaler, 1975, and the strange portrait is called Interior With a Book, by Richard Diebenkorn, 1959.  It's not actually a portrait, although I think the chair looks like an abstract human form looking out the window.  The color and texture is exquisite in each.

We also found another art-imitating-Star-Wars piece (or the other way around).  Doesn't this statue, The Chariot, by Alberto Giacometti, 1950, look like Taun We, the polite hostess on the clone planet of Kamino from Episode II?

We continued on to the European art section, where we discovered that the Impressionism wing is under construction until next year!  There were a couple still there though, like this Monet, View of Argenteuil - Snow, 1874.  His snow scenes are so impressive: look at the blues and purples that help make up the different shades of snow!

And then there were these two lovely springtime paintings; Olive Orchard by Van Gogh, 1889, and Landscape by Paul Gauguin, 1894.  Both use the wispy, expressive brushstrokes characteristic of impressionism, but in two very different ways.

I am definitely going to have to make a trip back to Kansas City when this gallery re-opens, I mean, look at that lineup!  After another few rooms we moved on to the Asian art gallery, which was awesome.  The St. Louis Art Museum has a section of Asian art, but it is always so disappointing because it only includes Asian pottery.  This one had prints galore!

 After spending a fair amount of time looking at the scrolls, we had to move to the outside quickly, as Taylor had to be back in Lawrence for a graduation party by a certain time.  On the way, we passed this room, but decided not to go in.  The perspective was worth a picture though.

We took a quick walk around the front to get the views and walk through the little garden on the side. Taylor marched right over to the wall to get a picture of the exterior, and re-enacted a scene from The Great Escape where Steve McQueen rolls his baseball over to the fence and explains it to the guards. This was my first museum trip since being back from Europe, and it was a good one indeed.  What a great way to start off my birthday festivities!

(photos by e.hunt, and t.hunt)

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