Monday, July 28, 2008

New York Trip- The Met

Lordy, Lordy, people, it was a crazy awesome week this past seven days. First, Morrigan and I went down to New York to visit Ruth and Brooklyn for their birthdays. Keeping my nearly unemployed budget in mind we went to The Met. I had never been - I know, shocking!- and we had a blast. The art was amazing- of course. The place is huuuuge, and the architecture of the actual Met is pretty cool.

We saw the Greek and Roman sculptures and then went across to the Temple of Dendur. It was very, very, very cool. I love Egyptology and it was very amazing to see all of the artifacts and the temple and tombs. The mummies were fascinating, and the blue hippo was so darn cute I wanted to take him home. The temple has all sorts of carved grafitti from where people visited the temple over the last 300 years. Napoleon's troops and wealthy Brits and other Europeans on holiday carved their names and dates into the temple.

It is sort of weirdly cool to see someone took the time to carve- quite nicely I might add- their name and date into a piece of stone in Egypt so far from home. On the other hand, they defaced this gorgeous temple. Caring not at all that to scratch their own name into stone they obliterated a history deeper and more important than theirs could ever be.

I even found a poem about it by Shane George. He, too came to The Met and saw the Temple and was both fascinated and annoyed by these graffiti artists of another era.

Next we took a spin through the Superhero Fashion exhibit which was nothing of what I expected. Cool, but I wasn't dying to linger there.

We did a quick sprint through the American wing, but it was mostly under construction. Then we toured the modern art section. It was a mix of things that were amazing and things that make me say, is that art? Seriously, art? There was a giant, two-storey high painting of Chairman Mao. It was very impressive. This is me as Chairman Mao's tie. Unfortunately taken with Ruth's blackberry, so it's teeny. But funny.

They had an exhibit of Jeff Koons work- on the roof of The Met. So up we went. Did you know they have a little cafe up there and you can enjoy a beer or a glass of wine on the roof of the Met, surrounded by art and with a view of New York skyline and with Central Park laid out below your feet? Yeah, you can.

Jeff Koons work was very funky and cool. Definitely the kind of thing where I'm not totally sold on it, but the balloon dog was incredible. I loved that. And my favorite arty photo of the trip was the skyline of New York reflected in the red heart with the couple posing in front of it caught in reflection.

Then we did a quick turn through the Turner exhibit. I am a fan of Turner, but the other ladies were not lovin' it. We tried to see as much as we could of the European masters, but by far it was the most crowded wing. We couldn't get anywhere near Degas or Monet, but we did see part of the exhibit and it felt surreal. I always feel that way when I see paintings that are so familiar but you've never actually seen them. Van Gogh's sunflowers and self portrait and haystacks, Monet's waterlillies, Matisse's dancing figures, a greatest hits of dorm posters and framed posters from early apartments. Sometimes its downright difficult to comprehend that you are seeing the original, the one that was lovingly create by the artist and not just another print.

It can also be hard to see because I'm 5'3" on a good day and often wind up being stepped on and elbowed in the head in large crowds. Blargh.

At that point we had to pack it in for the day because we had tickets to the Yankees game that night. More on that later!

No comments: