Thursday, December 31, 2009

Spending a day at the Met

and what a wonderful day it was.

Yesterday was a return trip to another one of my favorite places, the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Every time I go there I come away with new insight on a few art works. Because the trouble is that the museum is so vast you almost have to focus on a select few rooms, art pieces and/or periods. You can only take so much in at one time. It can be overwhelming.

We, all five of us spent the entire day there. But the main reason for going this time was Charlotte's insistence on being our personal educator of Baroque Flemish/Dutch art -- her first Art History course at University. And she knows her stuff, apparently. And she LOVES it to death.

I never appreciated this group as much as I do now knowing what they were really after. They were after reaching the mind and soul of their subjects. Getting into their heads. They were after the "right now, right at this very moment."

(I kept insisting that it was all about the light source (optics), the geometrics, the multiple rooms. But that apparently is not the most important discovery these masters contributed.)

Rembrandt -- It is also about what you emphasize and what you choose to leave out. And getting into the mind.

What really made my day tho, was what my husband said about a latter day famous Dutch painter's (van Gogh's) work, a painting featuring a man, his young son and his wife tending an overgrown garden. He remarked on the storytelling, the fact that it pulled you in and found a spot in his mind, the right here and now. He remarked on how the subjects felt about tending the garden, how the garden had a life of its own and how van Gogh used his own imagination to bring the painting to life.

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