Thursday, June 5, 2014

Art Talk and Walk

On May 23rd, I posted an Ellen Bass poem with a copy of one of my favorite Matisse paintings, Open Window at Collioure. Today I actually saw the painting! I stood right in front of it, the window and the ocean and the boats and the green and the sky. The pinks and the blues made me tear up a bit. Here it is, straight on.

I went with Henry to check out the brand new Van Gogh to Kandinsky show at LACMA -- one of those blockbuster big-city art shows that's only bearable if you go on a Member's Preview day. This is a Gauguin:

I was struck, as always, by the excessive flesh of the women of the time, by how lovingly and reverently they were painted. No sinew or muscle or abs of steel. Dang. I was born in the wrong century.

It was a wonderful show -- not too many people and not too many paintings, all of them hung on walls painted the most beautiful shade of dark blue. Here's a wonderful Picasso sketch:

I rounded a corner and caught, from the corner of my eye, Van Gogh's Wheat Field with Reaper and Sun. That definitely brought tears to my eyes. I didn't take a photo -- but I did walk back and look at it for a second time, along with the Matisse. I don't know very much -- o.k., anything, really -- about art, but certain paintings move me to distraction, and this is one of them.  Here's a copy from the internets:

The yellows, the green, the sun, the man's sickle and green clothes, that strip of blue mountain -- magnificent.

It's been a stressful, hairy two days and I was upset with myself for having reserved my two tickets (free with membership) for this afternoon, but I'm so glad that I went. Strolling around these paintings, listening to the murmurs of appreciative visitors and basking in color and vision -- it was just the thing to dispel some of that hair.


  1. Oh Elizabeth! What a fabulous, wonderful thing for you to do today! Everything else will get done but you will never have had that chance again. Not really.
    Thank you for going and sharing, too.

  2. Ah yes , art and music soothe the soul. Wonderful paintings always make me emotional too.

  3. You did just the right thing for yourself - wonderful. Art is so nurturing. It quenches a thirst you don't even know you have.

    Thanks for sharing such beauty. Can you tell us who did the woman pinning her hair up?

  4. Beautiful! So glad you went and got to see your favorite Matisse. I remember the first time I saw Van Gogh's "Starry Night," it was literally a breathtaking experience. Seeing a painting in person makes photos of paintings pale in comparison, doesn't it?

  5. thank you for sharing these. i'm with you; the van gogh is amazing.

  6. These paintings seem to me a kind of poetry. What is said, and (just as - if not more - important), what is not said, glowing from the canvas. My gosh, that window painting is blooming with sensuality, satisfaction and joy. YUM. I'm so glad that you had tickets and went with Henry. Your kids are so blessed to have YOU as their mother!
    Have fun in SFO. Though the resistance to cannabis is hard to understand, please remember that you are lighting the way for others. You KNOW things that others do not know, and your insight, experience and presence will be more helpful than perhaps you can imagine. xoxo



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