Monday, August 16, 2010


Today we visited the lovely Norton Simon Museum. If you get a day to spend there I heartily recommend it, but even a few hours is time well spent.

We were a bit pressed for time, so we had priorities. Vincent for me! They have a collection of seven!
Mulberry Tree, October 1889

Vincent van Gogh 
Dutch, 1853-1890
Oil on canvas
21-1/4 x 25-1/2 in. (54 x 65 cm)
Norton Simon Art Foundation, Gift of Mr. Norton Simon
© 2010 Norton Simon Art Foundation

Rembrandt for my companion. They had a few paintings on display, but the Museum owns an extensive collection of drawings and sketches that aren't on display. Which annoys me to no end.
Self-Portrait, c. 1636-38

Rembrandt van Rijn
Dutch, 1606-1669
Oil on panel
24-7/8 x 19-3/4 in. (63.2 x 50.2 cm)
The Norton Simon Foundation
© 2010 The Norton Simon Foundation

They also have quite a few of Degas' pieces and with which I intensely enjoyed broadening my acquaintance.
After the Bath, c. 1890-93 (dated in error by another hand: 1885)

Edgar Degas
French, 1834-1917
Pastel on tracing paper mounted on cardboard
26 x 20-3/4 in. (66 x 52.7 cm)
The Norton Simon Foundation
© 2010 The Norton Simon Foundation

There were some lovely Corots.
The Cicada, 1865-1875

Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot
French, 1796-1875
Oil on panel
18-1/4 x 14-5/8 in. (46.4 x 37.2 cm)
Norton Simon Art Foundation
© 2010 Norton Simon Art Foundation

The museum also has a few pieces by Toulouse-Lautrec. Upon leaving we were presented with a souvenir in the form of a print-- my favorite by this artist in their collection!
At the Cirque Fernando, Rider on a White Horse,1887-1888

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec
French, 1864-1901
Pastel and drained oil on board
overall: 23-5/8 x 31-1/4 in. (60 x 79.5 cm)
Norton Simon Art Foundation
© 2010 Norton Simon Art Foundation

The Getty was undeniably fabulous! If I had a chance to go to one of them again though (always depending on what the current exhibitions are ) I'd jump at the Norton Simon.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

gerome at the getty

I'm currently in California-- Long Beach to be exact-- for two weeks.
Today we went to the Getty to see its collection of Rembrandts and a current Gerome exhibit.

The Black Bard was my favorite. I loved the Middle Eastern trappings and the colors and the tiny details of the yellow leather shoes and cowrie shells on the scabbard. The figure himself is so arresting though. Such beautiful hands and eyes that dared me to ask a story.

The first piece I saw that I fell in love with was The Bacchante. The way her hair and horns match textures is incredible and her lovely facial structure is exotic enough to convince me that she *could* be only mostly human.

Thumbs Down has elements that figure prominently in Gerome's work and make it memorable. His treatment of detail-- nothing goes unnoticed-- his treatment of light with its unexplained shimmerings and gleamings-- and his treatment of jewelry and other adornments-- the armor here is *fantastic*.

His treatment of cloth in all of its textures, weights and colors was also phenomenal.

There's a slide show here of the Getty's exhibition highlights that is worth seeing. And the work is worth seeing in person if you get the chance. His hand was amazingly delicate.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

recommended reading

so, sherry : : the blog

Who knew Sherry Truitt blogged? I suppose I should have.
At any rate, she just published two excellent articles on online advertising and a Pablo Neruda poem-- all quite worth reading.

So get to it!