Tuesday, June 12, 2007

"Three Drawings and Another Museum Visit"

Wednesday, June 13, 2007 A

Once again I wake in the middle of the night to ease my back!

I ponder the three silly drawings I did earlier and what they could mean. I'd been reading a small book I got about Calder, and had read quite a few pages. Then the urge to do art and not just merely read about it came over me.

The first one, of the content fat lady, what could it mean? The border of her skirt looks like a deck of cards she is shuffling. The words, "not in the cards" came to me while doing it. And who are the two beings beside her? Is the lady me and the beings my readers? (I hope there are more than two!)

"Not in the cards," that ascent into the tall monument? Julia and I made no dalliance yesterday. We got up at 7:00am (4:00am Arizona time!), washed and dressed, but did not stop to have tea. We instead rushed down to the restaurant, ate and got on our way. We're knowing our way better to the 'Foggy Bottom' metro station so we got there fairly quickly.

After the walk to the monument's ticket dispenser, we were there only 50 mintures after the 8:30am opening time. TICKETS ALL SOLD OUT!" said the big red sign. I was disappointed and we began the long trek on foot to the National Gallery of Art. Julia assures me, having been up in it as a child, that it is not THAT big of an experience. Certainly Wikipedia has photos of the views obtained at the top and there are even photoes online of all the commemmorative bricks within its inner walls.

I've no wish to camp out there at the wee hours of the morning (that would be now!) for this experience, so I am content.

The other aspects of that drawing, I don't know. Am I saying, were I thinner, I wouldn't have so much CHAFING? Oddly, I suffer more from it than Julia. But I think this is more due to my legs being shorter than hers. I must make a great many more revolutions of legs to cover the same distance as she does.

Moving on to the second picture, the bespeckled lady as 'BA spirit', with her wings. Am I saying that despite these limitations, my spirit has flown much here? Indeed it has...

The third peculiar drawing, "Wants In", a spirit confronted with a boundary might reflect what disappointment I still might harbor over the 'no more tickets' available.

But it is slight. Not having spent time at the monument, it did allow us more time at the National Gallery of Art. This is another majestic place I recommend to all students of art:

Steps leading up to the entrance...

There's a statue of Hermes/Mercury in the rotuna lobby...

I didn't get a very good picture of him, but there it is, anyway...

And yes, I saw in person many paintings I've loved through the years...

A Girl with a Watering Can
oil on canvas, 1876
French, 1841 - 1919

oil on wood, 1889
French, 1848 - 1903

This one was new to me, but I love her sensuous elegance... (or is it "sensuous sleepiness"?)

The identifying card was missing, so I...

...snapped the artist's signature... Renoir

Nestled among the maze of gallery rooms, we found...

...a very pretty courtyard...

There were many beautiful sculptures...

marble, 1610
Barthélemy Prieur
French, 1540 - 1611

Sword hilt detail...
Giving a feminine face to Justice didn't begin with the French.
The Egyptians also give Justice (Ma'at) a feminine face...

There are not so many famous women artists in the 17th century, but here is one:
(I don't think she really wore that fancy collar when painting!)

oil on canvas, 1630 Judith Leyster
Dutch, 1609 - 1660

I love the way the Impressionists gather sunlight:

Woman with a Parasol - Madame Monet and Her Son
oil on canvas, 1875
Claude Monet,
French, 1840 - 1926

But they weren't the first, for this painting just glows of light when you see it...

Keelmen Heaving in Coals by Moonlight
oil on canvas, 92.3 x 122.8 cm (36 3/8 x 48 3/8 in.), 1835
Joseph Mallord William Turner
British, 1775 - 1851

Julia and I saw many marvelous things, and we only saw part of it. At around 2:15pm, I grew weary, and felt I could walk no more. Julia readily agreed, we can return another day to see the rest.

As we made our way towards the Smithsonian metro stop, we passed by the Natural History museum. I spoke to Julia of how we'd seen EVERYTHING in there, but that one IMAX movie. Then a thought occurred to me, "Hmmm, we are here beside this edifice, entry is free to get in. We don't have to pay for stuff we've already seen. We only have to pay for the IMAX movie!"

So we walked up the stairs and were content to sit outside the IMAX theatre until the movie began. "Lions 3D" was well worth it. I noted the same man "Liversedge" was responsible for this one, as well as the Shark film. "Sharks 3D" was done in connection with the Cousteau organization, whereas Lions 3D was done in connection with the National Geographic Society. I am grateful to all these fine institutions for ennabling these marvelous venues of exploration.

(Maybe the bespeckled lady in my second drawing is wearing those red framed 3D glasses that assist such flights of spirit?)

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