Art is not a thing;
it is a way.
Giacometti and Picasso
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
New York City
While in New York, The Metropolitan Museum is always a very worthwhile way to spend the day. It is an incredible place. I may go to see a certain art exhibition, or a new remodeled wing of the museum, but then it will be something unexpected that makes it memorable, unique, and a big shot of inspiration to get my creative juices flowing!
I met up with my friend Marlene, around the corner at Dean and Deluca. She now lives on the Upper East Side, but I met her in a painting class at U.C.L.A. extension, in 2007. She's an unbelievably talented painter, and at the time was working as an architect, in Los Angeles. Anyway, now she is busy with a two year old but was able to get a babysitter and spend a bit of time with me at the museum! So great to see her!
Greek and Roman Galleries
Roman, About A.D. 220-230
Dionysos on a Panther with His Attendants
Marble portrait bus of Marcus Aurelius
Roman, Antonine, ca. A.D. 161-169
Purchased from the Louvre in 1807
Marble portrait of the co-emperor Lucius Verus
Roman, Antonine period, ca. A.D. 161-169
Islands of the Pacific Ocean/Arts of Oceania
Of course, since I was there … I had to visit my old Italian friends …
New European Paintings Galleries, 1250-1800
detail from The Musicians
Treat a work of art like a prince.
Let it speak to you first.
The Holy Family with Infant Saint John the Baptist
Madonna and Child
Filippino Lippi (1457-1504)
Tempera, oil, and gold on wood
The Young Saint John the Baptist
Piero di Cosimo
Tempera and oil on wood
Islamic Art Wing
Since my last trip, they reopened the Islamic Art wing, after an 8 year renovation! This was November of 2011. I'd seen interviews on Charlie Rose and read articles, and I couldn't wait to visit. This was one of my main reasons to come to the Met, on this trip, and let me tell you, it did not disappoint!
Iran, Isfahan, A.H. 755/A.D. 1354-55
The 15 new galleries are for the Art of the Arab Lands, Iran, Central Asia, Turkey, and Later South Asia.
Bowl with Central Fish Motif
Iran, Kashan, 13th century
Vase with Handles
Syria, Mamluk period (1250-1517)
second half of 14th century
Glass; blown, applied handles, enameled and gilded
Tile from a Squinch
Uzbekistan, Samarqand, Timurid Period
Second half of the 14th century
Spain, 16th Century
Wood; carved, painted and gilded
Gift of the Hearst Foundation, 1956
I believe most or all of the carpets are from Turkey … so stunning.
Star Ushak Carpet
Turkey, Ottoman period (ca. 1299-1923)
Late 15th Century
(I love this capet!!! It's in the above photo, as well, on the wall -far left)
Reception Room (above and below) from a large house
Dated 1119 A.H./A.D. 1707
Iranian Glass (Qajar period)
Safavid Tile Panels
Iran, probably Isfahan, Safavid period (1501-1722)
first quarter of the 17th century
Probably my favorite find at the Met, years ago, was the Roof Garden. It's not open all year … they close it for the winter, but it's a space that overlooks Central Park. The first time I was there, it was a spectacular day, with my friend Lynn, and we drank champagne among the sculptures on the roof. (Yes, you can order a champagne!)
This time was a completely different kind of installation by Pakistani artist, Imran Qureshi.
The Metropolitan Museum
The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden
(born 1972, Hyderbad, Pakistan)
At first, I was looking around for sculptures and someone said to Marlene and I … "Look down!"
I bought the little book about the installation. In it, the artist talks about seeing red in the space, and at first, it looks like somewhere that an act of violence has taken place ... but as you look closer, you see the beauty … like in his country. What a beautiful metaphor. It might have been extra moving for me, having had traveled to Pakistan, when my parents lived in Islamabad, but I think anyone would be impacted by it.
"This commission presents the first large-scale installation in the United States by the artist Imran Qureshi (born 1972, Hyderabad, Pakistan). The sources for the lush patterns that sprout from his spills of paint are the detailed works on paper that he makes in the style of the miniaturists who worked for the Mughal court (1526–1857)."
Looking down at the hand painted leaves … inspired by his study of traditional Mugal Miniature painting. The painting on the roof was in acrylic paint.
from the museum website:
"Within the strictures of this ancient discipline, Qureshi continues to find remarkable room to experiment. In his exquisite miniatures, the artist pairs richly detailed landscapes with figures in modern dress, images of contemporary life in Pakistan, or portraits of himself at work."
Hajra Loves Rain
Gouache on pasted papers
(17.2 x 28 cm)
"At Lahore's National College of Arts (NCA), Qureshi studied the rigorous techniques of this tradition, which range from gilding and hand crafting the thickly plied, carefully burnished paper supports to the careful application of color with tiny handmade brushes of squirrel fur. As assistant professor in miniatures at NCA, Qureshi now teaches this practice to a new generation of students."
Gouache and photo transfers on cut and pasted papers
21 1/2 x 15 1/2 in.
Ink, gouache, watercolor
and metallic paint on cardstock
Ink, gouache, watercolor
and metallic paint on cardstock
13 x 9 7/16 in.
To see more pieces from the exhibition from Imran Qureshi, as well as the 16th and 17th masterpieces from the genre of Miniature Mugal painting, which he studied and draws from in his work, click here.
This video is from his installation in Berlin, as Artist of the Year 2013.
You may want to start the video at 2:20
Beautiful Marlene on the Rooftop Garden!
And me, in my fall attire … ;)
The essence of all beautiful art,
all great art,
blessings and light!