Tag Archives: art museum

Filling the Spirit in Limoges

(And why, one wonders, is worshiping spelled with one ‘p,’ but shipping is spelled with two?)

But anyway, the end of March was blessed with a ladies’ retreat of the AECM community of churches, in French. I was privileged and delighted to be a part of this, and encouraged that I was able to participate and follow a significant percentage without the printed notes this time. It is wonderful to sing and worship with so many different Christian women from all parts of France.

Friends, some of whom I carpooled with.

Friends, some of whom I carpooled with.

Our group from the Toulouse area.

Our group from the Toulouse area.

Making a joyful noise to the Lord!

Making a joyful noise to the Lord!

Creating prayer calendars

Creating prayer calendars

Sunday lunch, after worshiping at the church in Limoge.

Sunday lunch, after worshiping at the church in Limoge.

Before returning to Toulouse, our carpool chose to make a visit to the ceramics museum. I get to add yet another museum to my list! I really need to make a page to collect my museum visits. I enjoy going back and remembering them.

The Museum of Limoges Porcelain, March 2014

The Museum of Limoges Porcelain, March 2014

My friend Dita in a porcelain sculpture outside the museum.

My friend Dita in a porcelain sculpture outside the museum.

The museum, decorated with enameling.

The museum, decorated with enameling.

Limoges is also known for its stained glass manufacture.

Limoges is also known for its stained glass manufacture.

More detail of the museum.

More detail of the museum.

One of many giant platters decorating the exterior wall.

One of many giant platters decorating the exterior wall.

You can see a few of my favorite displays here. Continue reading

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Paris: the Day of the Musee D’Orsay

The next day was a Sunday, and found Theo still sick, and he seemed to be getting a cough. But our museum passes were all pre-purchased, and Theo still had hopes of seeing the beaches of Normandy Monday, so we decided to see if he would improve. We left him to his internet and manga and headed back to Paris, Myriah to the international service at the Cathedral du Notre Dame, and Stoney and I to Sainte-Chapelle, apparently once a royal chapel, and an amazing collection of stained glass.

The chapel is under renovation, it’s third one, I believe.

The chapel isn't far from Notre Dame, and the is the smallest church we have visited.

The chapel isn’t far from Notre Dame, and is the smallest church we have visited.

The difference between restored windows and yet-to-be-restored is clear. These are dirty.

The difference between restored windows and yet-to-be-restored is clear. These are dirty.

The restoration process is extensive and painstaking. They remove panels and take them apart, cleaning each piece, replacing the leading, before putting the puzzle back together. It must take FOREVER.

The restoration process is extensive and painstaking. They remove panels and take them apart, cleaning each piece, replacing the leading, before putting the puzzle back together. It must take FOREVER.

See some of the results, and our visit to the MO, by clicking here. Continue reading

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Paris: the Day of the Louvre

Our first day, having left Theo surfing the net on his iPhone in the hotel room with meds at hand, we began (via metro) at the Arc de Triomphe. We saw it from across the street, where plenty of people were congregating, yet saw no way across the exceedingly busy round about. We did see people darting across the round about, and opted to view from afar. We later found there is an underground access, for future reference.

The Arc de Triomphe...bigger than I thought.

The Arc de Triomphe…bigger than I thought.

Thus begins a very broad, very long road to the Seine, the Champs-Élysée. On it we passed a store my younger daughter would have enjoyed visiting.

Louis-Vuitton. The Sun King would have shopped here, I'm sure.

Louis-Vuitton. The Sun King would have shopped here, I’m sure.

We passed through many Christmas shop stands and landmarks, re-entering the metro at the Jardin des Tuilleries, after the Egyptian obelisk.

I can't even remember what this post is.

I can’t even remember what this post is, but I liked it.

Christmas comes with roasted chestnuts.

Christmas comes with roasted chestnuts.

A close up of that roof.

A close up of that roof.

Coming up on the garden...

Coming up on the garden…

And the Egyptian obelisk...actually brought from Luxor.

And the Egyptian obelisk…actually brought from Luxor.

With Egyptian writing.

With Egyptian writing.

And from here we began our day at the Louvre. Click on through to join us… Continue reading

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The Basilica di Santa Maria Novella

The first great basilica in Florence was Santa Maria Novella. It was finished in the 1300s. We visited this our last day, and it was inspiring. And just another reminder, that many of the photos I post can be clicked on to open individually, allowing you to click again to enlarge parts. This is how I found the paintings of the apostles and saints in each small arch above the entrance at the Byzantine church in my previous post. It’s like a “Where’s Waldo” for architecture!

The front of the basilica. The back is apparently what you see from the train station.

The front of the basilica. The back is apparently what you see from the train station.

These churches all seem to have a courtyard of some sort. I think they are beautiful.

These churches all seem to have a courtyard of some sort. I think they are beautiful.

The Italian courtyards have design elements as intricate as any inside the building. The window beside Stoney lead to the Spanish Chapel.

The Italian courtyards have design elements as intricate as any inside the building. The window beside Stoney lead to the Spanish Chapel.

A close-up of the columns.

A close-up of the columns.

The frescoes in this section are quite damaged; to be expected, I guess, in an area exposed to the elements.

The frescoes in this section are quite damaged; to be expected, I guess, in an area exposed to the elements.

See inside the chapel and basilica here

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Sightseeing in Florence

One major question a visit to Florence raises: WHERE did all this marble come from?! And who knew it came in so many colors?

My primary sightseeing destination was the Piazza del Duomo and further on, the Renaissance art mecca, the Gallery Uffizi. While you can’t take photos inside the Gallery, I did get my obligatory “Pam outside another art museum” photo for my collection. (By the way, the virtual tour online is excellent.)

Another notch in my belt...the Uffizi.

Another notch in my belt…the Uffizi.

Florence is definitely done up fancy, almost everywhere you go. We had reserved tickets online to avoid waiting in a line at the door. We, in fact, got in a little early for our reservations because it just wasn’t that busy. A tour group had gone in the reservations door a little before us, and we only walked past 15 or so people to go in. I am sure it is much worse when it isn’t shortly after opening on a Sunday in spring. Anyway, the ticket office to exchange our vouchers for tickets was across the street, and quite beautiful, too, if you look up.

ALWAYS look up in Florence.

ALWAYS look up in Florence.

This is the piazza (I think) that housed the fountain of Neptune, which I actually liked. I just don’t know if it was the real thing or a copy, because this has an area, some covered, some not, with copies of many of the most famous sculptures in the Uffizi. The copies are for everyone to see and learn from for free, with no concern for pigeons or other vandals.

Part of the Neptune fountain. I think the green is a color change wrought by the water, but I suppose it could be the color of the marble?

Part of the Neptune fountain. I think the green is a color change wrought by the water, but I suppose it could be the color of the marble? Or maybe just those parts are bronze?

Tourists hanging out around the statue replicas, most of which include plaques explaining their origin.

Tourists hanging out around the statue replicas, most of which include plaques explaining their origin.

This is also a prime spot for catching a tour carriage, or being hit up by any number of street hustlers with fake goods, right outside the Gucci Museum.

The Uffizi is to your left, down that street. Note how quiet the piazza is on a Sunday early afternoon. It won't stay that way.

The Uffizi is to your left, down that street. Note how quiet the piazza is on a Sunday early afternoon. It won’t stay that way.

of Florence and the Duomo here

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Following Picasso through Barcelona

Anyone who has browsed much on this blog can tell I enjoy art. In fact, one of my top five most-viewed posts, even today, is one in which I introduced elementary art students to cubism. So it should be no surprise that my number one experience in Barcelona was the walking tour in the steps of Picasso.

The guide, to the left, mesmerizing my daughters, to the right.

The guide, to the left, mesmerizing my daughters, to the right.

Our guide was very engaging and very knowledgeable. The focus of the tour was really Picasso’s Barcelona years, the years of his youth and young adulthood. Our first stop taught me several new things about Barcelona, as well as Picasso. This is the Three Cats bar, where Picasso met friends and held his first exhibition.

The 4 Cats in the heart of Barcelona.

The 4 Cats in the heart of Barcelona.

This is also where I learned that historic buildings in Barcelona are marked with a plaque set into the pavement in front of them. If the information on the plaque matches the name of the current business, it is a very old enterprise indeed. And The 4 Cats is a historic treasure.

An example plaque, as I did not get a good shot of the one 4 Cats.

An example plaque, as I did not get a good shot of the one at 4 Cats.

The tour was so engaging that even my younger daughter, who has little interest in art, said she enjoyed it.

The tour was so engaging that even my younger daughter, who has little interest in art, said she enjoyed it. And the doorfront of the bar is gorgeous, eh?

The most striking, obvious mark of Picasso on the city is the College of Architecture building. The story of how Picasso basically snuck this contribution in, which, although his design, had to be sandblasted into the stone by another, was very interesting.

Barc.picassobull

picasso.easter

We got to see where the Picasso family lived, and how illustrative it was of their relative poverty. We also saw where his first studio was, compared to his last. The whole tour really walked you through his increasing struggle to distance himself from his father. The best part, though, was arriving at the Picasso museum, bypassing the loooong and winding LINE for the entrance! Man, that was delightful! Just marched right past a whole SLEW of tourists! Very satisfying, actually, and the museum building itself was just beautiful. And large.

Arriving at the Picasso Museum.

Arriving at the Picasso Museum.

The museum was wonderful. It is the collection of the Picasso family, and easily demonstrated his mastery of classical art in his teens, and his growth and experimentation over the years. I just wish I had been more forward-thinking earlier in the day. We had already walked the city several hours BEFORE the two hour tour, and by its end, I was so tired. And my feet were SO sore. I wanted badly to use my ticket to continue exploring the museum in depth, but had to concede the day and head back to the Metro and our hotel. It was such a wonderful experience, though! I was wishing the whole time I could use the information and experiences to the benefit of my former students back home!

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Chalk Up Another One!

I have added The Art Institute of Chicago to my museum list!

A long line waits for admission outside the museum July 4, a free admission day for Illinois residents, which we are not.

Well, some of it, anyway, because that place is HUGE!! I was floored by the size of the place. Theodore, on the other hand, was profoundly dismayed. He was a reluctant visitor to begin with, and upon seeing the size of the museum, he apparently felt exhausted before we even began. I am sure rising so early for a 6 am flight to Chicago had nothing to do with it.

The sculpture in the distance behind Theo is maybe 20 feet tall. The scale of this museum is enormous. Note the joy in the face of our young visitor.

Click here for the rest of our tour

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A Museum in a Monastery

Posing with a sculpture outside the Ulrich.

Remember how I have been collecting art museum visits for the second quarter century of my marriage? I am not doing a great job recording it, but I do have the Kimbell, the Ulrich Museum of Art on the Wichita State Campus many times in the last couple of years, and of course many visits to the Wichita Art Museum, which I have inexplicably never documented.

Recently I was able to add the Musee Des Augustins in Toulouse to my list, which feels like a HUGE accomplishment! (My Chrome browser has a feature that offers to translate French pages to English, so very handy.) We didn’t have long enough to see the whole museum, or to linger with what we did see, but I thoroughly enjoyed our visit. The museum is in an old monastery, which is pretty cool all by itself. The pipes for a huge old pipe organ are still in the first exhibition space we went to, and on Wednesday evenings there is an organ concert. Most of the museum’s collection leans local, which is astounding, since it includes Romanesque sculpture, gargoyles, a host of Toulousain artists, and French artists I know. I was quite surprised by the pieces by Toulouse-Lautrec they had on display. His posters have never really grabbed me, but getting close to these original paintings, I found his work to be much more compelling. You can see how much of the canvas he left untouched just capitalizing on that negative space. His paintings had energy and life, and he managed to snare it with the fewest possible strokes, I think. I admire that minimalist approach.

Outside the monastery.

A beautiful setting for a museum collection spanning the 1300s through the 1900s.

I am looking forward to taking Theo and seeing more, more slowly. The day we went must have been school field trip day or something, because class after class was assembling in various galleries while teachers explained exhibits in French. Pretty cool! And the students were all so attentive and well behaved.

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