Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Metropolitan Museum ~ A Big Dose of Inspiration!

Art is not a thing;
it is a way.
~Ebert Hubbard

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

Marble Sarcophagus
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

Melanesia Gallery
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.
~Arthur Schopenhauer

The Holy Family with Infant Saint John the Baptist
Caravaggio (1571-1610)

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!

Prayer Niche
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
(love this!!!)

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

Ceiling (below)
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
Damascus (Syria)
Dated 1119 A.H./A.D. 1707

Iranian Glass (Qajar period)

Safavid Tile Panels
Garden Gathering
Iran, probably Isfahan, Safavid period (1501-1722)
first quarter of the 17th century

Beautiful right?

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

Imran Qureshi
(born 1972, Hyderbad, Pakistan)

At first, I was looking around for sculptures and someone said to Marlene and I … "Look down!"

At first, you are not sure about what you are seeing … 

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.

Marlene …

There was a room inside the museum with his works on paper, along side traditional Mugal Miniature paintings from the 16th and 17 centuries … I was so inspired and awed by these pieces, that when I found out there was a little book, I was beside myself!

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."

This installation pairs works on paper by Imran Qureshi (born 1972, Hyderabad, Pakistan) with historic miniatures from the Museum's collection. It is presented to complement the artist's painted commission on the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden."
Hajra Loves Rain
Imran Qureshi
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."

Imran Qureshi
Gouache and photo transfers on cut and pasted papers
21 1/2 x 15 1/2 in.

Moderate Enlightenment
Imran Qureshi
Ink, gouache, watercolor 
and metallic paint on cardstock
22x16 cm

Imran Qureshi
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,
is gratitude.
~Friedrich Nietzsche

blessings and light!


Theresa said...

In gratitude I thank you for this wonderful tour!!

cath hy photographie & peinture said...

Superbe reportage,de très jolies photos!,j'adore NYC je n'ai pas eu le temps de le visiter lorsque je suis passé à NYC il y a tellement d'expositions à voir!

tarocake said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
tarocake said...

You know, the Met almost feels better through your photographs. One can focus on the sights without being distracted by the hard acoustics or gusty winds!

Kerry O'Gorman said...

So much to take in but the Islamic installations are so beautiful. They remind me of my time in Morocco.
And the red painting exhibit is truly genius. Thanks for the tour Lucinda.

Cobalt Violet said...

Grazie ladies, for the comments!
And, of course, for visiting the blog. :)


i would have loved to have walked on the terrace beautiful ...wonderful write up lucinda thank you for sharing your visit