I’ve taken the NJ Transit train from New York City to Hamilton, NJ and back, maybe fifty times. At least forty of those times, I’ve been fooled into thinking that the human-sized sculptures of people scratching their heads while they stare at a giant sculpture of a tooth outside of the train station, were actually human. It wasn’t until years and years after making the journey to meet my family at home base (my grandmother’s) did I realize that the sculptures (there are also huge mariachi dancers when you turn into the train station) were there for a reason.
Visiting Paris has been a huge dream of mine since 1994, when I first started pretending I was in the art scene. I wore a red French beret and a black turtleneck with a music note pin on my chest pretty much every day. I imagined taking the train to Giverny to see Monet’s Gardens in person, visiting the Picasso Museum, and seeing Mona Lisa at the Louvre. Giverny was closed for the season until the weekend after I left Paris and the Musée Picasso had a limited collection while they prepared for a special exhibit, but Mona Lisa? She was there. And I was going to see her.
If you’re in Las Vegas, Nevada, and want to see something other than a fake Statue of Liberty or the inside of a casino, drive ten miles south to visit Ugo Rondinone’s public art exhibit of Seven Magic Mountains. The exhibit launched in May 2016 and will only be up for two years, so start planning your detours from your bachelor/bachelorette parties and corporate conferences now.
Brooklyn is where it’s at. A tree grows there. Beards grow there. But most importantly, the art scene grows there.
I’ve had a thing for Picasso since I was a 9-year-old nerd with a red French beret, trying to become an artist and a dolphin trainer at the same time. I try to see as much of Picasso’s work as possible, so it’s helpful to live in New York City.
Avid readers of this blog may know that I am somewhat of an art nerd. It all started in the ’90s when I would go to “Art Goes to School” with my dad while he talked about different paintings to my sister’s classes. It got really bad when I started to wear a red French beret everywhere I went (for visual proof of this, check out this post). While I know some people avoid museums like the plague when they travel, seeing my favorite artists’ work is often a big draw for me when traveling. If you feel the same way about art, here are some of the best spots in Madrid and Barcelona to get your fix. And if you don’t feel the same way about art, hopefully this post can inspire you to try it out anyway.
A few weeks ago, Christie and I decided to pause our Friends on Netflix marathons, peel ourselves off our couches, and make our way to the MoMA. The MoMA is one of my favorite museums and until February 10, it is home to an exhibit of Henri Matisse’s cut-outs. It’s important to me that when you’re reading this post, you are saying the French “ahn-REE” and not the boring English “Henry” in your head. This gent deserves it.
Y’all already know I’m a huge fan of libraries, especially the New York Public Library and its lions. But you may not know that I feel the opposite about mornings. Get them out of here. When my parents were visiting me last month, I had a suspicion that they’d wake up at the buttcrack of dawn and they sure did. Because I don’t typically do a lot in the mornings, I didn’t know what to do with them before our lunch in Chinatown. Luckily, my dad suggested the library since they had never been. Plus, there were a couple of exhibits we could check out, just like we’d done the day before at the Beatles exhibit at the NYPL of Performing Arts.
One of my favorite things about New York is that you can find art anywhere. A few years back, I wrote about an awesome installation in Madison Square Park: Jim Campbell’s “Scattered Lights.” Although I try to make an effort to walk through this park every weekend, I haven’t given a ton of thought to the different art installations there recently. But yesterday, as I sat on a bench attempting to study for my Series 79, I got a little distracted by people walking up to three water towers in the grass behind me – it’s not hard to distract me.
When Banksy took NYC by storm last month (which I wrote about here), suddenly everyone became interested in graffiti, including this girl. Banksy’s New York exhibition brought a lot of attention to the graffiti mecca in Long Island City, 5 Pointz.
For our second Frousin day trip this fall (read about our first here), Jake planned a trip a few Saturdays ago for the NYC & North Jersey chapters of the fam to visit Storm King Art Center in Mountainville, New York, about an hour north of the city (just like Croton Dam). Christie, Jake, Katie, and I rode up together to meet the others. Other cars may not have had to deal with such sassy backseat drivers (guilty) or may not have been as lost as we were on the way home, but I can also bet that we had better car games than anyone.
This month in New York City, the sun set earlier, the leaves changed colors, and the media’s favorite topic finally shifted from Cronuts to Banksy, the famed graffiti artist. Each day in October, as part of the exhibit “Better Out Than In,” Banksy (@banksyny) posts a picture on Instagram of a new work and the area of town it is in. The media immediately goes croNUTS in search of the new piece.
The best thing I saw while I was in Florence last week was hands down, or rather one hand down and one hand with a sling thrown up over the left shoulder, the sculpture of David by Michelangelo.
When I was in middle school, a friend of my dad’s called the house and asked me to tell my dad that he had called. I forgot to tell my dad, probably because I was too busy working on my ‘N Sync website, and it turned out his friend was going to ask him to go to The Late Show with David Letterman with him. Being from the sticks of Jersey and not being able to imagine at the time that I would ever even *go* to New York, I felt awful. My dad doesn’t remember that this even happened.
A few weeks ago, Kat and I checked out the Picasso Black and White exhibit at the Guggenheim. It was actually my first time at this museum (hereby referred to as “the Goog”), but it definitely won’t be my last. The museum design (by Frank Lloyd Wright) is iconic and has been featured in many movies and television shows, including Mr. Popper’s Penguins which I accidentally watched a few minutes of once, but got to enjoy people chasing penguins all around the museum.