The Usonian House at Crystal Bridges

Homes

I love homes, old ones…the one’s people design with intent and artistic panache. Pamela and I first learned an original Frank Lloyd Wright Usonian home was coming to Crystal Bridges on a trip to visit the museum over a year ago, it was a brilliant surprise! Wright, a native of Chicago (Oak Park is a complete Joy) didn’t often visit my part of the country. There are a few notable exceptions like Price Tower in Oklahoma (Wright’s only skyscraper), but the best work is not close…until now! There are obvious restrictions, but you can schedule (you need an appointment before hand complete with time of entry) a tour of the Bachman-Wilson House, either guided or self-guided. The symmetry and detail here are completely thought out and elegantly executed. The engineering feet to completely deconstruct a home and build it a new is also quite impressive. I say it all the time, but Crystal Bridges is a Gem of the Ozarks!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 4 June, 2017
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 500
  • Shutter speed: 1/500s
  • Title: The Usonian House at Crystal Bridges

Orchid in Bloom at the Philbrook Museum

In Bloom

Orchids are one of my favorite flowering plants. They are so unique, so diverse. One of our early trips together, Pamela and I went to Tulsa, OK and visited the Philbrook Museum. If you haven’t been, it’s another of those treats in the mid-west. Anytime you blend the 20’s with Italian Style villa’s and sprinkle a ton of art and nature on top, you will find me having a brilliant time. This orchid was found in bloom inside the greenhouse on the grounds.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 20D
  • Taken: 4 July, 2010
  • Focal length: 50mm
  • ISO: 100
  • Shutter speed: 1/60s
  • Title: Orchid in Bloom at the Phillbrook Museum

Mechanized Horror

It’s Why I Love Art

I, like everyone, am drawn to certain kinds of art. I generally am drawn to, photography, abstract expressionism, impressionism, expressionism generally. I tend to dislike realistic depictions and prefer abstract, often obtuse allegory. When I go to museums, I tend to spend most of my time in these areas, but I try to spend time leisurely perusing though other galleries seeing what strikes my fancy. I especially tend to appreciate the depth afforded to special exhibits, but I always to the same thing. I see something I don’t care about and start to discard this event as boring. Almost always I push though this and am nearly universally rewarded with the unexpected. So was the case when I visited the Stedelijk and saw this massive collection of animated sculptures and automated art machines by Jean Tinguely! Not only was this show incredibly put together with a HUGE space dedicated to so many of his Machines, it was also interesting to see the decay of these monsters.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 18 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 27mm
  • ISO: 6400
  • Shutter speed: 1/80s
  • Title: Mechanized Horror

Red Glass Chihuly Bowls

Chihuly Bowls

This is perhaps a more familiar form explored by Dale Chihuly and on display at the Crystal Bridges of American Art. You should go visit the display and the museum if you haven’t been in a while (of have not been at all). The have some wonderful pieces and one of the few museums in the world where you get to listen to people regularly exclaim, “Well I do that”!

(not something you regularly hear in the Chihuly show)

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/4
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 3 June, 2017
  • Focal length: 18mm
  • ISO: 2000
  • Shutter speed: 1/250s
  • Title: Red Glass Chihuly Bowls

Glass Alien Chihuly Outdoors

The Lunchbox Has Landed

One of the great artistic resources living in the Ozarks is The Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. It is arguably one of the finest American Art Museums in the world, and I am flabbergasted how often I run across people who don’t even know of its existence. Pamela and I recently made a trip down to Arkansas to visit the Clinton Presidential Library in Little Rock and on the way home we stopped in to see the Usonain house newly relocated to the grounds. We just so happened to coordinate our visit with a fun Dale Chihuly Outdoor display (another of our favorites). This is the first of a few I will be posting over the next few weeks. It reminded me of some sort of alien form (or if you are into Magic…Emrakul).

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 3 June, 2017
  • Focal length: 22mm
  • ISO: 500
  • Shutter speed: 1/400s

Ancient Armaments

War

I often find the fascination with the tools of war sort of morose. To me, war is the worst of humanity. Even in conflict of purpose or humanitarian resolve, that genesis is to battle some horror, some Inhumanity. Art, and again this is to me, is the exact opposite. Art, and I mean art very broadly, is the greatest of our achievements. I am very often acutely aware of these feelings when visiting a museum like Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam which houses relics of many themes. Perhaps, this is a more balanced view, the best of worst of what we do as a species. Reminders that humans can disembowel someone they don’t know for an unknown reason, or paint “Night Watch”.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 17 February, 2017
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 1600
  • Shutter speed: 1/60s
  • Title: Ancient Armaments

Inside Musée Jacquemart-André, Paris, France

Parisian Opulence

A quick photo today from Paris. Pamela and I made a rendezvous while I was on a trip around the world. She didn’t want to go on the entire jaunt, but when I said I was ending in Paris, she cashed in some award miles (January in Europe tends to be cheap as mileage awards go)! This is one of the many museums in Paris and is housed in a gorgeous mansion. I absolutely LOVE opulent home tours and this was absolutely beautiful!

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/4
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 26 January, 2017
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 1600
  • Shutter speed: 1/320s
  • Title: Inside Musée Jacquemart-André, Paris, France

The Back End of the Space Shuttle Discovery

Space Flight

The impressive Udvar-Hazy Center, part of the incomparable collection of the Smithsonian, has this beast as one of its central attractions. The are bigger planes, more historically significant flying machines, few hold the mystique of the space shuttle. This is the back end of Discovery, who’s history is chronicled through the display. Seeing a shuttle that close, seeing what are the scars of it battle on re-entry, is a truly a huge bit of awe that I hope anyone interested in flight gets to witness.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/2.8
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 29 May, 2012
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 1600
  • Shutter speed: 1/100s
  • Title: The Back End of the Space Shuttle Discovery

Domed Ceiling in the Vatican Museum

Up with Ceilings

A quick photo for today, another ceiling. Perhaps not as overwhelming as Monday’s photo of La Sagrada Familia, but beautiful. I very much enjoy the idea of finding beauty that is often missed. All around us are items that seem unimportant, but someone spent thought and time to design something that is not only practical (function) but also beautiful (form). What in your life, a thing you use every day…was made to make your day filled with a small bit of beauty?

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/5
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 18 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 16mm
  • ISO: 2000
  • Shutter speed: 1/250s
  • Title: Domed Ceiling in the Vatican Museum

I am also fond of hidden elements.

Minor Treasures of the Vatican Museum

All About Light

Photography really is all about light (and sometimes its absence). Once you start exploring this, you find photos in the most unlikely of places. Ok…in fairness, the Vatican Museum is a bad example of a place where you might be unlikely to take a photo. True you might become overwhelmed so that you simply forget to even try to make a picture. This hall is enormous (hundreds or thousands of sculptures), and the time I visited the Vatican Museum (morning) it was a gloomy, unlit place…except this single pool of glorious light.

Photo Technical Info

  • Aperture: ƒ/4
  • Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
  • Taken: 18 January, 2016
  • Focal length: 27mm
  • ISO: 1600
  • Shutter speed: 1/800s
  • Title: Minor Treasures of the Vatican Museum