Monday, November 30, 2009

Gorgeous Getty

Because I have been on vacation, I haven't had time to write content/captions for this post — so I came up with a solution: Can you name the artists shown in the slideshow below? Leave a comment listing the artists in order and you will have the satisfaction of being right. Go!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Norton Simon Slideshow!

Because I have been on vacation, I haven't had time to write content/captions for this post (and a couple more upcoming ones) — so I came up with a solution: Can you name the artists shown in the slideshow below? Leave a comment listing the artists in order (obviously, photos of scenery and my grandma don't count), and you will have the satisfaction of being right. Go!

Monday, November 23, 2009

My Home Museum

Spending my first afternoon home in Pasadena at the Norton Simon Museum, where I first learned to love art!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Fathers of Cubism in the Modern Art Wing

Hanging side-by-side on the first floor of the Modern Art Wing are Pablo Picasso's Still Life with a Bottle of Rum and Georges Braque's Still Life with Banderillas.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Last Week on the Roof and a Visit with Vince and Jimmy

Yesterday, my friends Vince and Jimmy accompanied me to the Met. It's always fun to share with my friends all the things I've learned over the last year. I feel like I'm showing them around my home for the first time — don't I wish I lived in a million square-foot mansion with priceless treasures!

Since I've done several informal tours with friends and family, I've begun to highlight a lot of the same things each time. However, this time I broke away from predictability and steered Vince and Jimmy through spaces they hadn't seen before — and we didn't even go to Egypt at all! We started in European paintings, first with the American Stories exhibit (I'll have more on that soon), then to Medieval and Renaissance paintings, and, of course, the Rembrandts. Next, I took them down to see the Lehman Collection, through European Decorative Arts and Petrie Court.

Then we made the ascent to the roof, which sadly closes next week while I'm out of town for the holiday. I'll miss my favorite place in New York, but I'm already looking forward to the next installation. My experience of the roof changed between last year's Jeff Koons exhibition and Roxy Paine's Maelstrom this year, so I'm anticipating another exciting piece.

We finished up in Modern Art and strolled through Oceanic and Greek and Roman Art on our way out. It was another successful visit — I humbly enjoy impressing my friends.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Magnificent Mandalas

Image from

Tucked away in the northwest galleries on the second floor, Japanese Mandalas: Emanations and Avatars seems simultaneously underemphasized yet perfectly constructed for its subject matter.

Though I have a deep appreciation for all of the treasures housed by the Met, my personal taste generally steers me toward more modern, vibrant, expressive pieces. However, I was moved today by the peace of the Japanese galleries and the most extraordinary pieces I have ever seen hanging in them.

Mandalas are not only beautiful, meticulously painted works of art, but also meditative tools. Looking at the incredible detail of each mandala, it was easy even for me to relax and begin to consider every little shape and line.

I can only imagine what it would be like to be spiritually invested. The highlights of this exhibition are the Mandalas of Both Worlds: Womb World and Diamond World, of which several examples are displayed.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Musing to Music

Stopped by this concert in the European Paintings galleries today. I love how the music just wafts through the halls as I approach, surrounded by masterpieces.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Top Ten Things to See at The Met Museum

Today is officially the one-year anniversary of MetEveryday! In the last year, I have visited The Met more than 150 times — I have learned so much and met some awesome people; and, most importantly, I have discovered in myself a true passion for art history, specifically museums that display it. As a mini-recap, I've developed my own list of Museum HIghlights — my Top Ten Things to See at The Met Museum:

1. The Roof: I know this is kind of unfair, since it is only open from May-October (and weather permitting, at that), but I LOVE the roof at the Met. It is my favorite place in the city. One of the highlights of my year at the Met was the Young Members Party, where we looked out over the park from the roof at night, and drank cocktails in Petrie Court. I love to go at sunset or just after nightfall — the lights of the skyline are so beautiful. And best of all, it's been extended this year, so it is open until November 29 — GET THERE, you won't regret it.

2. Egyptian Art: Obviously, the Temple of Dendur tops this list. It is the most impressive part of the museum (next to the roof, in my opinion). The Sackler Wing that houses the temple is a beautiful space bathed in sunlight with Central Park as its backdrop. Besides the Temple of Dendur, my personal favorite part of the Egyptian Wing is Tomb of Meketre, where archaeologists found dozens of little models of boats and everyday activities dating back to 2009 b.c.

3. Modern Art: For me two artists stand out above all the rest in Modern Art. The both have two major pieces displayed in close proximity to each other, and they have actually worked together as well. The first is Chuck Close; I remember learning about his work back in high school, when we were given the challenge of painting a portrait using a grid format. His painting, Mark, in the mezzanine gallery simply blows my mind (it faces Lucas, provides a juxtaposition with a more expressive style). The other is Stephen Hannock, whose Oxbow and Kaaterskill Falls paintings hang right in the southwest corner in front of the stairwell on the first floor. After posting about these pieces, Hannock himself actually contacted me and I was able to meet him at a book signing! It was so exciting for me to meet such an impressive living artist.

4. 19th-20th Century Painting and Sculpture: I love Impressionists, so I frequent these galleries to look at the museum's huge collection of Van Gogh, Degas, Monet, Renoir, and more. In the sculptures department, my favorite is Ugolino and His Sons by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux, which can be found in Petrie Court (and a bronze version resides in the Musée D'Orsay in Paris).

5. Asian Art: Astor Court Chinese Garden is a tranquil, beautiful place to sit and think.

6. African and Oceanic Arts: I like to call African Art the Dr. Seuss Wing, well, because so many of the sculptures look like Dr. Seuss characters. The Oceanic Wing is so fascinating to me, particularly because the a lot of the pieces are from the 20th century, even though they look completely primitive.

7. European Painting: Anything by Rembrandt, especially Man in Oriental Costume and Aristotle with a Bust of Homer, and of course, Vermeer's: Young Woman with a Water Pitcher.

8. Greek and Roman Wing: Ionic capital and shaft of a column from The Temple of Artemis at Sardis, Bronze Chariot Inlaid with Ivory.

9. European Decorative Arts: All of the period rooms are beautiful, period.

10. American Wing: The Palace and Gardens at Versailles by John Vanderlyn, The Roccoco Revival Room by John Henry Belter,, Vanderbilt's Herder Brothers' Library Table, and the Living room from the Little House, Wayzata, Minnesota, by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Read my very first post about a visit with my friend Megan here.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Birthday, Vermeer!

Johannes Vermeer was born on October 31, 1632 in Delft, Netherlands. To celebrate, check out Vermeer's Masterpiece: The Milkmaid at the Met!

Click here for my post on Vermeer (and ignore the comments section, so lame).

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

My Miró

Joan Miró. Spanish, 1893-1983
Dutch Interior (III),1928
Oil on canvas

Joan Miró. Spanish, 1893-1983
Circus Horse,1927
Tempera on canvas

Born in the Spanish province of Catalonia in 1893, Joan Miró was deeply influenced by his country's native landscape and artistic heritage. During the early part of his career, he lived in Paris, where he was associated with the French Surrealists and its practitioners, but he returned to settle in Spain after World War II. This deliberate remove from the center of the art world is symptomatic of Miró's independence, a temperament that would mark his art as well as his life. Mining the possibilities of free invention encouraged by Surrealism, Miró developed a style that drew from highly personalized and psychological references. Often beginning with a recognizable starting point, Miró transformed his subjects through whimsical color and free play with form. (from

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Still Life 1976 - Andy Warhol

A new addition to the mezzanine gallery in the Modern Art Wing: this Warhol piece shares a wall with two other similar-sized paintings. The three look great together!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A Visit After Work with Lynzie

After work today, my friend Lynzie and I headed uptown to the Met to take in my favorite treasures, and see the city lights from the roof. We took a nice stroll through Egypt and the American Wing, then up to the roof, down to European Paintings, through Modern Art, and out through Oceanic, African and finally Greek and Roman.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Kehinde Wiley at Deitch Projects

Yesterday I went to see "Kehinde Wiley: Black Light" at Deitch Projects in Soho. You may remember Wiley's "Veiled Christ" from the Met, when it was briefly on display in the Modern Art Wing, where Stephen Hannock's Oxbow currently hangs:

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Rodin in Brooklyn

In keeping withe the theme of "old friends" at other institutions, today I'll share something I came across in the lobby at the Brooklyn Museum. After admiring the finished piece in the Petrie Court at the Met and also at the Rodin Museum in Paris, I was particularly excited to see four sculptures comprising a study for Rodin's The Burghers of Calais!

The figures are a "rough draft," if you will - a study of nudes that were then draped in wet canvas for clothing before the final mold was cast - a glimpse at the artist's process, which I just love.

French sculptor, Auguste Rodin might be the most prolific sculptor in history - at least I've seen more Rodins than anything else when it comes to sculpture. And I'm not complaining! I LOVE his work. That man captured more emotion in bronze and marble than any painter I've come across.


Monday, September 21, 2009

Murder at the Met

Saturday evening, my friend Elena and I refined our sleuthing skills on a scavenger hunt through the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Watson Adventures hosts hunts all across the country, with dozens right here in New York City — including six at the Met.

Watson Adventures says that Murder at the Met is its most challenging hunt, but that didn't stop me and Elena. We put our best foot forward, finishing the hunt in record time and taking the top prize! It wasn't easy though, without giving away any of the clues, I will tell you that the hunt had us power-walking back and forth across the museum, and racking our brains to decode the mystery answer. I had a slight edge, knowing my way around the museum certainly helped, but I was pleasantly surprised that a lot of pieces in the hunt were ones I hadn't seen before. Oh yeah, our hunt leader, Liz, was great and super nice, too.

Anyone looking for a unique, fun, and challenging activity should try Watson Adventures — I know I'm looking forward to my next hunt!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Yinka Shonibare at Brooklyn Museum

Since I started this blog, I've been searching for a way to incorporate exhibitions I've visited at other museums and galleries to diversify my content and express my impressions of all art that I experience. Finally, I've come up with a solution. Since I am so familiar with the Met's collection, I can now apply that knowledge and recognize similar pieces and techniques elsewhere. So I had been dying to see Yinka Shonibare at Brooklyn Museum, and I finally went on the last day.

I was SO glad I did too, because I absolutely loved the bright colors and intricately crafted garments created by Shonibare. AND, I came across this piece:
which I recognized from a past exhibition at the Met (African Textiles: Design Without End):

I have to say, I was ecstatic! Without realizing it, I really have learned so much from visiting the Met for almost a year.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

More Old Friends: Ugolino and His Sons

Yesterday, I brought up the point that I have begun to recognize "old friends" from the Met at other locations, so I thought I'd share another example. I first encountered Ugolino and HIs Sons, a beautiful marble sculpture (above, left), in the Petrie Court for European Sculpture at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. So I was thrilled to recognize a bronze cast (above, right) and a small clay model (right) by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux at Museé d'Orsay in Paris.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Calder Mobiles

For me, one of the greatest things about doing this blog project is familiarizing myself with great artists, and recognizing their work outside of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (it's kind of like seeing an old friend for me). I flew to California (where I'm from) last weekend, and was pleasantly surprised to see an ENORMOUS Calder mobile in the ticket area of JFK (top). The Met's own Calder mobile, located on the second floor of the Modern Art Wing is pictured below it.

Alexander Calder (1898-1976), whose illustrious career spanned much of the 20th century, is the most acclaimed and influential sculptor of our time. Born in a family of celebrated, though more classically trained artists, Calder utilized his innovative genius to profoundly change the course of modern art. He began by developing a new method of sculpting: by bending and twisting wire, he essentially "drew" three-dimensional figures in space. He is renowned for the invention of the mobile, whose suspended, abstract elements move and balance in changing harmony. Calder also devoted himself to making outdoor sculpture on a grand scale from bolted sheet steel. Today, these stately titans grace public plazas in cities throughout the world. - from

The Met held a Calder Jewelry exhibition a while back, which highlighted his skills as a metalworker and showed his diversity as an artist. And, speaking of seeing "old friends," I came across a Calder sculpture in the garden at the Baltimore Museum of Art a few months ago. Also, "Alexander Calder: The Paris Years" came through The Whitney in New York last year, and I was able to catch it at the Centre Pompidou in Paris over the summer. It was a wonderful, whimsical exhibition, see the video below:

Thursday, September 17, 2009

MetEveryday on MUG!

MetEveryday was featured on Manhattan Users Guide yesterday and the traffic poured in! I discovered a great site out of it and got a bit of a confidence boost.

I LOVE what they wrote about the blog too: Girl meets museum, falls in love, stalks daily. We love the impulse behind visiting The Met Everyday and hats way off to the blogger who shares her experiences of, and insights from, its hallowed halls and galleries.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Vermeer's The Milkmaid

The much-anticipated exhibiton of Johannes Vermeer's masterpiece, The Milkmaid, is now on view at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, along with other works by the Dutch artist and his contemporaries.

The gallery held a decent crowd for a Thursday afternoon, and rightly so. Not only is The Milkmaid stunning, the exhibition also displays several more of Vermeer's 36 known paintings, as well as beautiful depictions of Dutch daily life by other artists.

There is a reason, however, that the title of the show pointedly singles out one painting. As I said before, it is stunning. The Milkmaid clearly stands out above the rest, not in size or even complexity, but in vibrance. The colors are, rich, exquisite, mesmerizing - the sunlight glinting off the bread and its basket sucked me in, and the tiny highlights of the woman's earrings held me there in the painting.

I've marveled at the Vermeers in the Met's permanent collection, enjoying his exquisite pattern work in Young Woman with a Water Pitcher and A Maid Asleep, but now The Milkmaid stands as my unrivaled favorite painting of its time, by any artist.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Napoleon III and Paris

You'll have to hurry if you want to see the photography department's exhibition, Napoleon III and Paris, which ends September 7 (the Met Museum is open Monday, September 7 for the Labor Day holiday). It's tucked away in a small gallery space off the main hall of 19th- 20th-Century European Paintings.

I had wandered through this exhibition once a couple months ago, but hadn't spent much time with it until today. I was again reminded how much more valuable an experience can be if you just slow down and take each piece in one at a time. I think it also helped that I have now been to Paris (I took my very first trip there in July). But even for those that haven't been, these photographs will spark the imagination, for many of them depict a Paris that no longer exists. Their historic value outweighs even the arresting imagery of burned-out palaces, rubble, and barricades equipped with cannons and guns.

Notably, there is a photo of the Vendome Column, which was broken down by a group of Communards led by artist Gustav Courbet on May 16, 1871; and a drawing by Édouard Manet, entitled Civil War, which depicts a fallen soldier behind the barricades. There are also two stereographs (which I love, because of their three-dimensionality).


Thursday, September 3, 2009

Malian Jewelry

Pendant (left) and Ring with Equestrian Figure
Mali, dogon peoples
19th-20th century
Copper alloy

I love horses, so these two little pieces from Sudan in the African Arts collection struck my fancy. I'd totally wear that ring!

You can find more info on the region from the Timeline of Art History.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Relaxing Friday Evening

Just having a Crumbs cupcake and a cappuccino for dinner in the American Wing Cafe.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

First Met Drawing

So I've been meaning to do this for a LONG time. And since we all know I've suffered from some serious writer's block this summer, I decided to actually sit down and draw at the Met.

I made my way over to Petrie Court, where they have moveable chairs perfect for those, like me, without their own drawing stool. (The Court also has some of the Met's most beautiful European Sculptures — my favorite is Ugolino and His Sons by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux)...

I recognized my favorite Met resident artist, whose name I'm told is Dwight — though I've been inexplicably too shy to ever introduce myself. He seems to have picked up a couple of apprentices, one to whom he was giving a lesson today.

Anyway, instead of tackling Ugolino without having picked up a pencil in months, I found a smaller more manageable bust by the name of Marysas by Balthazar Permoser. I drew for about 30 minutes, and produced the sketch shown above. It was a relaxing and enjoyable way to spend a visit to the Met - I'll be mixing more drawing in from now on.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Chuck Close

If you've read my previous posts (here and here), you know how I feel about Chuck Close. So to see a self-portrait in this exhibition by the man who has dominated the genre throughout his career was unsurprisingly satisfying.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Charles Ray

I'll admit, I've been really bad about keeping up my posts this summer — I seem to favor sunshine and outdoors when I'm not at work, and though I've been visiting the Met, I've slacked on writing about it. Well, I apologize and promise to do a better job. To make my blogging life easier for the remainder of the summer, I've come up with a few ideas, one of which I will employ now.

The Met recently installed a second series of self-portraits for the The Lens and the Mirror exhibition and I've documented each one. It starts today with this photograph by American sculptor, Charles Ray.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Beach Day!

The weather was so beautiful today, there was no better place to spend it than at the beach. Of course, I then had to visit this 19th-century painting that always reminds me of summer.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hannock Gallery Talk

Ok, so I'm back. Sorry for the long hiatus — between planning a trip and traveling in Switzerland and Paris, I was overwhelmed for a while.

Today, I returned home to the Met to hear a Gallery Talk by Jason Rosenfeld, Professor of Art History at Marymount Manhattan College and friend of Stephen Hannock, about the artist's landscapes in the Modern Art Wing. I'll attempt to summarize the hour-plus talk here, starting with an explanation of the Oxbow's full title — The Oxbow: After Church, After Cole, Flooded, (Flooded River for the Matriarchs E. and A. Mongan) Greenlight.

After Church and Cole refers to landscape painters, Fredrick Edwin Church and Thomas Cole, who influenced Hannock (though Church never painted the Oxbow). Greenlight refers to a 1903 painting by Rockwell Kent, which is in the Smith College Museum of Art.

E. and A. Mongan are sisters that Hannock knew; Agnes, director of Fog Museum at Harvard, who gave him his first show in Boston, Elizabeth (or Betty), director of Smith College Museum of Art. "These people were central to his formation as an artist and also as a professional artist," Rosenfeld said. "His paintings are always dedicated to people, which may seem quaint, but it's part of this sort of buildup and the ideas behind of these kinds of pictures."

Stephen Hannock has made 21 versions of the Oxbow, differing in size and detail and not literally referring to the scene but, rather, inventing a composition that is meaningful and personal for the artist. This concept of seriality is present in the history of art and even more consistent in modern art — think Monet's cathedrals and grainstacks; and Pollock's drip and pour paintings.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Friday, July 10, 2009

Young Members Party 2009

I had a little fun with photoshop on a couple of these

Visiting the Met when it is closed is a unique experience in itself, but pair that with "summer chic" attire, music, a three-hour open bar, and sunset on the roof and you've got yourself a party. Last night's Young Members Party attracted hundreds of 21 to 35 year-olds dressed in their sharpest summer attire.

My roommate, Ryan, and I marched up the steps into the great hall, where he remarked that "the Met makes even the Natural History Museum seem small" (I smirked with pride). As you can imagine, I had a great time — I'd never seen the Petrie Court that packed, Maelstrom looked great lit up with blue and purple lights, AND we were lucky enough to have a gorgeous sunset as our backdrop for the beginning of the party.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Fourth of July!

Celebrating our independence at the light-filled Charles Engelhard Court in the American Wing at the Met. The north wall of the courtyard contains the facade of the Branch Bank of the United States originally built on Wall Street in 1825. When the bank was to be torn down in 1925, Robert de Forest, then president of the New York Art Commission and the Metropolitan, arranged for the structure to be preserved as the future facade for the not yet built American Wing.

(source: Michael Gross, Rogue's Gallery)

Friday, June 26, 2009

MJ Will Be Missed

First, a talented child; then the King of Pop; and in the end, a public spectacle, Michael Jackson was undoubtedly an icon. Above is Jeff Koons' rendering of MJ with his favorite marsupial companion, Bubbles (from UR Chicago Magazine).

Saturday, June 20, 2009

A Field Trip to Chelsea

If you've been following my blog, you know by now that I have a tendency to wait til the last minute to visit my must-see exhibitions — and today is no exception. So when I saw that the famed Chelsea gallery, Pace Wildenstein, was showing Chuck Close's paintings and tapestries, I knew I had to go — even if (or especially because) it was the last day.

I might also point out that "Chuck Close blows my mind," as previously reported in the post entitled Potpurri... and that one of my favorite photos on the blog shows my friend, Stephanie, up close with Chuck Close. I first learned about his work in high school art class (thank you, Ms. Keeley), so my familiarity with the artist originally drew me in as a fan, though my interest has since progressed to true awe and admiration.

I have to say, good old Chuck lived up to my expectations and more. His work is amazing. The black and white photos are TAPESTRIES(!) woven with digital technology on a Jacquard loom. Close truly is the master of portraiture, and my best descriptor remains: "mind blowing."

Friday, June 19, 2009

Me and Mom at the Met

Pardon my extreme slacking this week, I've had a lot going on! I haven't had time to post about my most recent visits yet, but I promise, they're coming. I just happened across this photo from about a month ago when my mom was visiting.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Cutest Little Leopard

Soft-paste porcelain
French, Chantilly, 1735-40

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Selected Self Portraits

From the current exhibition, The Lens and the Mirror: Modern Self Portraits from the Collection, located on the north mezzanine gallery in Modern Art. I chose these guys because I remember studying them in History of Graphic Design — design is something I am still avidly interested in, despite my recent focus on fine art.