Friday, February 10, 2012

Because Sometimes You Just Need a Day to Yourself

Even though I should have spent the day reading about libel laws and examining court cases for my journalism ethics class, I decided to trade in my books for some fun.  I finished my morning dose of French and picked up equipment for an upcoming shoot before officially declaring the day one just for me.  After grabbing my usual skinny vanilla latte, I made my way to Astor Place to catch the next available uptown 6 train.  My destination for the day took me all the way to the 77th and Lexington stop...The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

I'm pretty sure it was a bed like this
that they slept in 
As a second grader I remember reading From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler.  In the story, two children settle into the Met: blending in with school groups on tour, hiding at closing time in the bathroom, bathing in the fountain, and sleeping in antique beds.  Basically, for any nerdy kid like me, it was the dream.  So,when I moved  to New York the Met was one of the first places I toured.  But before today I hadn't actually been back.

Just as I remembered, the Ancient Egyptian art with its mummies and Temple of Dendur were quite impressive.  Although, I did think it was a little funny how the shrine overlooks Central Park and all the hustle and bustle of the City.

Next, I looked around the Greek and Roman Art.  It was just like being back in Rome.  I'm sure one of their chipped statues resided in the Piazza della Signoria earlier in its life.

Then, it was off to the American Wing.  Here, the main attraction for me was the period rooms.  Furniture from the Revolutionary War right up to Frank Lloyd Wright decorated each room.  It was like time traveling, except  not as trippy.

I quickly ran through both the Medieval Art (I got enough of that last semester) and Armory.

I'm Obsessed with this Painting! 
The exhibit I was most excited to see was wedged between them, Modern and Contemporary Art.  Even though it's been two and a half years, I still remembered the whimsical paintings  by Florine Stettheimer that welcome visitors when they first enter.  Along with pieces from famous names like Pablo Picasso and Jackson Pollock, how could I not absolutely love it?  There was also some awesome pop art from Andy Warhol featuring Jackie Kennedy, the most fabulous of the First Ladies, and a display of the top chairs from the 2000s.

 As for the top floor, I'd already been at the museum for a couple of hours.  I didn't think my senses could take another sculpture or painting, so I quickly looked at the photographs and left.
Autumn Rhythm (Number 30) by Jackson Pollock-my all time favorite artist 
"Jackie" by Andy Warhol 
Felt is the main component of this chair, added to the museum in 2010

Because I'd resisted the urge to buy the museum's overpriced food even though my stomach was growling, I rewarded myself with a pretzel from a street vendor.  Just like the characters from Gossip Girl, I enjoyed my meal from the steps of the Met.

A Few Things I Learned...
For me, it's a little bit weird to travel above 60 Street.  I feel like a tourist in my own city, but today when I ventured so far uptown I noticed a few things about the people that call it home:
1) they pay a lot more for their street food-my pretzel cost $4
2) designer labels are featured in store windows, not second hand clothes
3) there's cooler crap to buy on the street
4) people walking on the street smoke cigars, not joints
5) they have way bigger dogs (maybe because they have a park so close) not just dachshunds

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