The warm embrace of art

Paul Gauguin’s Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We?

It was a cold, rainy day in Boston and my host had to work. I had to fend for myself. Options: wallow in the comforts of home (tempting), take the duck tour (bad idea on a chilly, wet day), or head to the museum (bright idea).

Seated bodhisattva. Carved limestone from the Eastern Wei Dynasty. About A.D. 530

Museums are always on the list when visiting new places. It’s a great way to pass time, especially when you have lots on your hands. The warmth of the interiors is irresistible on a winter’s day, and it applies to more than just temperature.

Edgar Degas’ Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer (La petitedanceuse de quartorze ans)
Claude Monet’s Rouen Cathedral Facade and Tourd’Albane (Morning Effect). 1894, Oil on Canvas.

My hours of solitude will be spent in the Museum of Fine Arts. “You need more than a day to enjoy that place,” my host warned me. “There will always be a another time,” I replied, hinting that I do want a second visit for Boston is such a lovely place. Summertime would be good on the next visit.

The Yellow Room by Frederick Carl Frieseke.

The original MFA was built in Copley Square and opened on July 1876 with 5,600 works of art in its collection. As the collection and visitors grew, the museum moved to its current location in Huntington Avenue. Today, it is one of the most comprehensive art museums in the world housing more than 450,000 artworks, and one of the most visited globally receiving more than one million guests a year.

The Museum of Fine Arts Boston

The MFA collection includes the Art of the Americas- 53 galleries in a new wing devoted to this collection, from the Pre-Columbian era through the third quarter of the twentieth century; Art of Europe- with the largest collection of Monets outside of Paris, the world’s most extensive collection of paintings and pastels by Jean-François Millet, and masterpieces by the other great artists in history like Titian, Dürer, Rembrandt, van Gogh, Gauguin, and Renoir; Art of Asia— Japanese, Chinese, and Indian painting and sculpture, Japanese prints and metalwork, ceramics from China, Korea and Vietnam, and the arts of the Islamic world. The collection is among the finest in the Western world.

From the late classical or early Hellenistic period, a GreekGold earring with Nike driving a 2-horse chariot.

Aside from its permanent showcases, MFA’s temporary exhibitions offering diverse topics of the art world make it a must go place year-round.

Thomas Cole’s Expulsion from the Garden of Eden, 1928

Time flew by in the warm embrace of this museum. It’s a shame to be rushing through art that needs to be admired for a lifetime. But looking at the bright side, this place gave me a good reason to come back for another visit. (I hope Cris, my host and good friend, will be able to read this. Wink).

Cupid. Roman, Imprerial period, about A.D. 190. Marble

For more travel & lifestyle stories, visit http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/ and http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on December 12, 2013.







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