Share a photo of what “relic” means to you — it could be your still-running 1979 Honda Accord Hatchback, a historic building in your town, or an old, rusted farm implement poking up through the long grass in a field.
Apotheosis of St. Louis
Most people think this statue that stands at the top of Art Hill in front of the Saint Louis Museum Of Fine Art is the same statue of Louis IX Saint and King of France that stood at the DeBaliviere entrance of the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition (aka. The Saint Louis World’s Fair). It isn’t, it’s a copy. The original statue created by sculptor Charles Henry Niehaus was made of plaster, horse hair and paint like most of the exhibition buildings that had been built for the Fair. Two years after the fair grounds had been demolished except for two structures, the Louisiana Purchase Exposition Company decided to commemorate their very successful fair with a bronze replica of the statue. Niehaus supposedly wanted too much money to cast his work in bronze, so the LPEC awarded the project to W. R. Hodges, a local artist. Until the Gateway Arch was constructed, this statue was the most photographed site in the city. I still photograph it several times each year. The photo shown here is my latest and current favorite.
And here’s how I spent my weekend!
Well, I went to my last Met Opera Live in HD of the season. Actually, it wasn’t the last broadcast of the season. The last opera is being broadcast next week Saturday, but I just saw it a couple of years ago and I’m not ready for a repeat performance yet. Anyway, I convinced Mlle. Renee to get out of bed early so I could get up and get going. I jumped on the Metro Bus and headed for the Art Museum in Forest Park. Unfortunately, when I got to the park I discovered that my local bus was being rerouted around the park. That’s what happens on May 1. Because of the congestion caused by people going into the park with cars on Friday, Saturday and Sunday during the summer season the Metro System runs the Forest Park Trolley into the park that stops at all the tourist attractions people want to see. I didn’t want to wait for the next trolley so I walked into the park to the Art Museum.
… than it is to walk up. But, you do get a great photo opportunity of the STATUE OF SAINT LOUIS on the walk up.
I know that while the name of the sculpture is The Apotheosis of Saint Louis, his horse remains an unknown, nameless beast of burden.
Actual the whole title is Così fan tutte, ossia La scuola degli amanti, which translates Thus Do They All, or The School for Lovers. It was an opera buffa that was written in 1790 and it has some rather out-dated views on women being fickle when it comes to matters of love and relationships. I suppose this was the comedy rage back in 1790. It really doesn’t fly these days. So while the music was fantastic and the performances by the cast were some of the best this season, the storyline was a hard sell. It’s also one of Mozart’s lesser performed works.
It was also four hours long, and the elderly gentleman in front of me was snoring rather loudly during the second act.
After the opera I walked through the galleries trying to find a new sculpture piece that recently went on display at the museum. It was a red clay stature of the Corn Maiden by the Mississippian Native Americans that populated this area about one to two thousand years ago. I didn’t find it.
Roman, Imperial Period
TORSO OF AN ATHLETE, 1st-2nd Century marble
Museum Purchase 6, 1937
The physique of this torso is almost too good to be true, chiseled pectoral muscles, the faint impression of washboard abdominal muscles, and an exaggerated furrow between the hip and abdomen. We see the integration of realism and the ideal in the musculature, flesh, and bone structure. For example, the furrow along the hip and abdomen leading to the genitals is an artistic interpretation of the actual anatomical structure. For the Greeks, the nude male body was one of the highest forms of beauty. For a man to achieve such a physique, he had to participate in athletics at the gymnasium, where both athletic and important civic events were held. A sculpture such as this represents not only physical, athletic, and military excellence but also desirability and possibly immortality.
PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH
Some curator was really impressed with that torso!
The Aluminum Tree -
Did you know that they rub bowling ball polish around the base of the tree to keep stray dogs from watering it?
One Duck a Swimming
THE PIED PIPER
Honoring the American Federation Of Musicians … really?
SUNDAY … I rested. Actually, I did try to pull some weeds out of the front beds, but it didn’t agree with my spring allergies. So I spent the rest of the day inside.
Today, I spent the day mowing the lawns for the first time this year. And it took me a half day to do it. Thankfully, I finished up and got all the equipment put away before the rain started. And by all the current weather predictions it will rain straight through until next Thursday.
“But wait a minute … what about your day at the museum that was in the headline???”
Oh, that was last Thursday! I was going to write about it over the weekend, but Easter commitments got in the way and I had to postpone it until today. Anyway, last Thursday I took my oldest friend Bill to the Panorama Restaurant in the museum to celebrate his birthday and view the featured exhibit. Actually, Bill really isn’t my oldest friend. I have a lot of friends who are much older, but Bill has been my best friend for longer than anyone else I know. For about 43 years. Actually, last Thursday really wasn’t his birthday either … his birthday really was on Thursday the week before. But real friends are always flexible with dates. Anyway we actually dressed up and went to lunch at the Panorama in the new addition to the Saint Louis Art Museum.
If you look close, you can see us in the second window from the throwback 1904 lamp-post. The restaurant is called Panorama because this is the view of Art Hill you see when you’re seated at one of the window tables.
It was a very interesting show that combined the work of painters and photographers who came to fame during the IMPRESSIONIST PERIOD in France. And it featured the work of photographic pioneers like Gustave Le Gray and Charles Marville, Barbizon School painters including Camille Corot and Théodore Rousseau, and Impressionist painters such as Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Edgar Degas, Paul Cézanne, Édouard Manet and Berthe Morisot. Being a special exhibit, cameras were not allowed. But, here’s an example.
It was interesting to see and compare the artists’ visions and the photographers’ captures of the same scenes.
After the we finished we wandered through the other galleries.
And here’s France as seen by some German painter.
It’s the John F. Kennedy Memorial Forest … and it does have walking paths and rustic benches if you just want to contemplate nature in the wild.
And that was my visit to SLAM last Thursday!
Well, not quite. I did have to snap a couple of shots of the men’s room in the new addition.
It’s so classy, I’d be afraid to use it.
In a post created specifically for this challenge, share a photo that means On Top!
Yesterday, I made one of my regular visits to the Saint Louis Museum. It is a classic building designed by Cass Gilbert as the PALACE OF FINE ARTS for the Louisiana Purchase Exposition of 1904 or as it is known around here THE SAINT LOUIS WORLD’S FAIR or The Fair Judy Garland Rode The Trolley To in Meet Me In Saint Louis.
It’s a beautiful old building supposedly inspired by the Baths of Caracalla in Rome. But I am always attracted to the six sculptures that stand ON TOP of the building. I suppose they represent the FINE ARTS, but it sure is hard to tell. They’re covered by a century worth of Saint Louis grime, soot and bird droppings. What do they really look like? But, they still stand on top of the building that stands on top of Art Hill waiting for people to drop by and visit. If can’t visit, click on the photo for a closer view.
They’re not really flying! Dragonflies won’t show up until the sizzling days of summer which probably won’t show up until next October. We’re still in the middle of that cool down. But my Origami Summer Insect Program said today was the day to fold a paper dragonfly.
I thought he’d like to take a spin over the paper waterfall. I’m surprised it actually turned out looking like a dragonfly.
I also went to the Art Museum this afternoon to view the special IMPRESIONISTS FRENCH exhibit. But that will have to wait until tomorrow. Mlle. Renee is telling me it is time to go the bed. So look for it tomorrow.
How I survived leaping forward an hour, a four long Russian opera, a temp drop from 85°F to 31°F in 12 hours, and more SNOW‽
When you live in the Wicket City, you’ve always got something or other to bitch about. So, I been a bit lax in the last day or four about updating my daily status. My obvious excuse would be that nothing was happening. But, I’d have to clarify that comment to admit, that I really didn’t feel like making anything happen! OK, I was in a winter’s end slump, I can’t adapt to DST time changes anymore, and I think I’m getting older and crankier. Or maybe I was bitten by the ennui bug. I’m sure Oscar Hammerstein would have been able to knock out a ton of memorable lyrics to describe or explain my mood or condition. Unfortunately, I don’t think I’m as restless as a willow in a windstorm really describes my condition or state of mind.
I did risk the possibility of winter rain storm last Saturday by heading over to the Art Museum’s Auditorium to attend a delayed showing of the MET Live in HD broadcast of Borodin’s rarely performed opera, PRINCE IGOR.
Now, Prince Igor, is an opera that almost everyone reading this post would recognize. Unfortunately, they would recognize it as KISMET, because Borodin was a real whiz at writing a catchy tune and couple of guys named Forrest and Wright “borrowed” his Russian music for some Arabian Nights lyrics they had written for a Broadway Musical. Actually, while Borodin spent over 18-years writing his opera, (He had a dual career as a chemist first and then a musical composer second or third.) and he died before it ever was performed. His friends Rimsky-Korsakov and Glazunov gathered all the bits and pieces and patched it together as a finished performable opera. And for the past 100 years it reappeared in a variety of versions. Saturday’s four and a half hour version was the latest. While I had quibbles with some of the director/adaptor’s choices with this production, I had none with Borodin’s original musical and storytelling creativity.
I don’t think it was goat’s milk.
followed by a Monday and Tuesday full of sun and temps in the upper 80s! Then yesterday afternoon the temp started dropping … dropping some 54 degrees! Thankfully, I survived that, too. And the overnight snow the weather wizards had been threatening us with yesterday turned out to be a lot of rain. Oh, well, that’s life in the Wicket City.
In meteorology for the Northern hemisphere, spring officially began yesterday on March 01, 2014. But you sure wouldn’t know it by looking outside last night or this morning. That’s when Stormageddon returned with a blast of Winterpast. It didn’t start out that way, because we had a family outing scheduled for late afternoon and evening as the Saint Louis Art Museum officially welcomed spring to the museum.
After a five-year hiatus that allowed the Museum to construct the new East Building and reconfigure all the galleries in the original Cass Gilbert building, the Museum’s annual festival of fine art and fresh flowers returned to the Wicket City.
And an abundance of spring’s blooming bounty shared the galleries with works art from all ages and all parts of the world. As custom, local florists and garden clubs were invited to present their interpretations of 31 works of art selected from the Museum’s vast collections … from Egyptian mummies to native artifacts to Modern Art. Here are some of the works that caught my eye.
With my brother and niece in the background.
Sorry, Beekmann is always a bit out of focus for me.
The two flower arrangements in the center are the floral interpretations of the MUSE CALLIOPE FIREPLACE PANELS on either side of the photo. This photo was taken in the Museum’s original library overlooking Art Hill, the park and the now mostly frozen Grand Basin.
This was my favorite flower arrangement.
But before that started, we were all able to head over to the HILL for a great Italian dinner and get home. This morning we woke up to freezing rain, sleet, near zero temps and snow.
In a post created specifically for this challenge, share a photo that shows us abandoned. As everyone should know, an abandoned building is, just by the fact that it is abandoned, is a dangerous place to be. So in this day and age most abandoned buildings are boarded up or fenced in to keep people from wandering around in them and getting injured. So, for my challenge I picked a subject that is brand new, but looks ABANDONED in an almost ancient way. My subject is Andy Goldsworthy’s STONE SEA, a sculpture piece created last year for the Saint Louis Museum Of Fine Art. The work consists of twenty-five giant sandstone arches assembled together to form a sea of stone in a narrow passageway between the original classic 1904 Museum building and a new 2013 addition. The STONE SEA can be seen through multiple windows in a corridor connecting the two buildings. My view of ABANDONED is seen through a single window,
Well, today’s high temp of 27F was recorded at 12:ooAM and we didn’t reach the predicted morning low of 6F. But never say never, because who knows what will happen before the day ends. Don’t know what the wind chill is, because I haven’t even been tempted to stick my head outside today. I will have to brave that external excursion sooner or later because I have an empty trash cart waiting to be pulled back into the yard. Mlle. Renee did the Gunga Din routine showing that she was a better man than I, by making on one or two, but THREE brief sorties into the frigid wastes. More out of necessity than exercise. I actually got up rather early this morning and get my butt out of the refrigerator. Ok, it was a pork butt and I had to put it in the crock pot for a day of slow cooking.
Can show you what it looks like until I take the lid off at 6:00 tonight. Also haven’t decided on pulling it or slicing it yet.
Last night I watched the Grammy Awards Show which was much too long. I also think Yoko Ono put at least three hex signs directly on me. My major question is why do the producers insist on doing musical production numbers combining the musical talents of two individuals or groups who share no common musical talent or abilities. The one with the least talent always drowns out the other one. I mean when you combine a Wagnerian soprano with a tongue twisting rapper, you’re not going to please fans of either one. And why did Madonna show up dressed like the chorus line of Chorus Line. I’m not even going to comment on Taylor Swift’s spastic hair tossing. Taylor’s Swift Hair Enough said.
WHERE, OH WHERE, HAS MY ORIGAMI KANGAROO GONE? I haven’t given up on the origami kangaroo yet. I also haven’t made an acceptable version yet either. And I haven’t given up on origami either. Why just this morning I was wondering, what if Peter Parker had been bitten by an atomic ant instead of a spider? That inspired me to fold … THE ATOMIC ANTMAN!
Hopefully, he doesn’t have a taste for BOOKWORMS!
In yesterday’s post I featured my Sherlock Holmes’ mug I used at breakfast. Not wanting to slight any of my other breakfast mugs, I decided to give them a daily appearance of their own. So today, I had a hot mug of EARL GREY TEA in my Saint Louis Art Museum Mug.
And the pork butt I’ve been slow cooking all day … it was tenderlicious and I forgot to take a picture of it before I started eating it. So now, who takes pictures of leftovers.
And in case you were wondering, THE ARCTIC MONKEYS were a British rock group.