Thursday, March 29, 2012

Van Gogh Up Close

Last Saturday, my husband and I took our Japanese exchange student to the Philadelphia Art Museum to see a special showing called, "Van Gogh Up Close".  Only to be seen in Philadelphia, the show will not tour and gave a glimpse of some paintings only available for view in cities in other countries (mostly the Van Gogh Museum in the Netherlands) and some from private collections.  The show was incredible and I really mean that.  After studying Van Gogh's work for many years as an art student, he was never really one of my favorite artists.  I suspect this has something to do with my deep hatred for the color yellow.  He used it a lot.  Oh, I know, he used plenty of others colors too, but when I think of him, I think of sunflowers and wheat fields.  Both are yellow.  Yuck.  For some strange reason, I was able to look at his work this time in a completely new and different way and I fell a little bit in love with him.

After the show, we showed Saki some of our favorite installations in the museum and it was really fun to be able to watch someone seeing these things for the very first time.  The fat man armor with the bullet hole.  The Japanese tea house.  The Roman courtyard, which is one of my favorite places on earth.  I'm not sure why, but I can feel my blood pressure drop when I walk into that room.  I never forget how lucky I am to live so close to this beautiful place and be able visit just about any time I like.  The finale to our trip was a browsing session in the gift shop.  I came across this doll in the children's section and honestly, it's one of the funniest things I've ever seen.  He has a velco detachable ear that comes with a tag that says, "Send it to someone you love."  Totally sick and completely awesome.  Also, please note how disgruntled and angry he looks.  Makes me smile every single time I look at it.

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