Art Expanding My Way of Looking at Life

I am back from my trip to National History Day with my daughter Z2, and touring Washington D.C. and a day in Baltimore, MD.

Over the next couple of days I plan to share some pictures and memories from the incredible journey I have been on this past week. What a unique blessing to go on this trip, and to share it with my daughter.

I was quite surprised by the fact that all the things to go see in D.C. are free, including all the Smithsonian Musuems, the National Zoo, the Art Galleries, and other museums. D.C. would be a great place for a family vacation, because of all the free things to do there.

Z2 and I spend a little bit of time in the Air and Space Museum.

My favorite part of this museum was seeing the picture taken from the Hubble Telescope, and reading the captions underneath the pictures, that talk about looking at gallaxies that are 13 billion years old, and newly forming galaxies. It baffles my mind to think of these things, but I love how it makes you realize how big the universe is, and how much I don't know.

My favorite part was taking some time on Tuesday and Wednesday to explore the National Art Galleries. On Tuesday, I explored the East Wing of the Art Gallery. Two of the paintings that I really liked were painted by Jackson Pollock.

The first was this one..."Number Seven."

Also on display was "Lavendar Mist".

I'm not sure what it is about these painting that speaks to me. I'm not sure I have to understand right now...that is the beauty of art. Maybe I can relate to the troubled nature of Pollock's soul on some level. But I did make a connection with these paintings.

Now these did nothing for me. There was a collection of nine murals from Mark Rothko, and I just didn't get it.

These murals are huge, as you can see by the photo below, and the people looking at the murals.
These were found in the East Building. The following day, I was able to wander around for about 3 1/2 hours by myself exploring the West Building.

I was amazed, while wandering through galleries of paintings that were from the same time period but different countries, how the look changes so dramatically.

Here is a German portrait from the late 1400's to early 1500's. Then I found it interesting as I walked into another room, and viewed paintings from the same time period, but a different country, how different they looked. Here is a painting from during the same time period. It is from the Netherlands.
And here is "Ill Fated Lovers" from Antwerp from the 1500's.

After looking at European paintings for a couple of hours, I needed to "cleanse my palette". So I walked over to the sculpture area to give me something different to look at and ponder.

I loved the Degas sculptures, such as these pictured below.

What I liked about these sculptures was the realism Degas brings out in his dancers. They are not stick thin, but have real life figures and are beautiful.

Two paintings that were very stunning were Monet's paintings of the Rouen Cathedral. There were two side by side in the gallery, one titled "Rouen Cathedral, West Facade", and the other "Rouen Cathedral, West Facade, Sunlight". How did he make the two so completely alike, accept the lighting?

Art gives us such a unique way to look at the world. It expands our way of looking at things, and shows us history, and perspectives that are not our own. I loved the way visiting this gallery expanded my vision of the world, and the way I look at life.


raymond pert said...

Some art is just about color. Abstract. And shapes. Kind of pure. Abstract.

InlandEmpireGirl said...

Wow! What a beautiful blog. Seeing the Art Museum must have been a highlight of the trip. I love the Jackson Pollock.

Pinehurst in my Dreams said...

Monet is my favorite. I would love to see some of his paintings up close. I have a couple of "posters" made from different "Waterlilies" paintings. Love the softness of the impressionist painting, and the bold color.

Jackie said...

Great pictures - what a wonderful experience you got to have with your daughter!

It's interesting reading about Kellogg here...I haven't lived there in a million years! Did you know any Limesand's, or Madsen's, or Umland's?

Ordinary Janet said...

I went to the Smithsonian many, many moons ago but I don't think I got around to the art gallery, I keep meaning to go back someday. Lucky you! All that art to drool over. Did they have any Velasquez?

Silver Valley Girl said...

Jackie--I am glad you enjoy reading about Kellogg here. I graduated from KHS with Randy Limesand. They lived out in the Cataldo area. There is a Hank Madsen that is a Kootenai County Prosecuter in CDA. He lived around here for a while. The Umland name doesn't sound familiar. When did you live in the Kellogg area?

Janet--Yes, the art was wonderful. I did see one Velazques that I know of, titled "The Needewoman". Some of those painting were so detailed and I often wanted to reach out and touch the velvet on the cloth. They were magnificent!

Crafty Green Poet said...

I love art galleries and i enjoyed reading your thoughts here. I love the Jackson Pollock paintings and the Monet's are wonderful, love the light in them. I really liked your comparison of German and Dutch paintings from the same period.