USA, New York – a pot pourri of NYC experiences – Tnhe Met Breuer, The Met, The Guggenheim and Phil Collins

This was my first visit to the Met Breuer which has taken the space where the Whitney used to be (it has moved to brand new premises in the Meatpacking district). In my view this building has always been ugly and lacking in flair as a place to showcase art and frankly that hasn’t changed with the Met moving in. However it has enabled them to showcase more items with special exhibitions. The first I visited was a throwback to my recent trip to Vienna – Klimt, Schiller and Picasso – but with an emphasis on their more salacious drawings. Interesting artistically but some of the drawings of obviously very young girls seem somehow less appropriate with a modern day eye on feminism. Here is a sample of some of the less salacious art.

The second exhibit was sculpture by Jack Whitten who dies last year. Some of his work was intricate and thought provoking as there is so much in each piece. Also below is a mobile that I just loved – I am a sucker for mobiles.

Although I focused on the amazing Heavenly Bodies exhibit from my last visit to the Met – I also chose to focus on some of the sculptures around the museum. The first is a starving prisoner with his sons who is trying to decide whether to die or eat his children – the children are imploring him to do the latter and one child has already died. Very graphic but amazing piece of work. Completely different this young girl is so clearly in a hurry – great physical movement. The thin lady is a Frank Lloyd Wright sculpture for one of his homes – he rarely did these so interesting and the last one is a very old Chinese ceramic of a lady of high position.

Then a trip to the gorgeous Guggenheim whose design never fails to amaze me. I always start at the top and work my way down the spirals. I attended the opening of a new exhibit by a lady called Hilmer Af Kint – a Swedish female artist who worked in the early 1900s and who rarely displayed her work publicly as she didn’t feel that people were ready for abstract art. Indeed she also insisted that her work not be shown until at least 20 years after she died. She was very spiritual and her paintings in this exhibit reflect her later works which are her “translation” of spiritual messages (not from the dead – more just being in touch with things beyond the obvious) into art. Incredible colors and designs and some very large canvases. It is great that her work is finally becoming accessible to a wider audience.

And then for something completely different – Phil Collins live at the Barclays Centre in Brooklyn. Took me back to seeing him in the 80s both in Genesis and solo. He hasn’t aged as well as Elton or Billy J – but he has a great band to support him and his 17 year old son was the drummer.

Couple of bursts of music for those who remember….

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