Last Friday, I finally went to the New Orleans Museum of Art. I’m a little embarrassed that it’s taken me over a year to go there, especially when it’s free for residents and part of the impetus for getting registered and licensed in Louisiana was so that I could avail myself of this benefit. But with the family out of town and an afternoon to myself, I decided that last Friday would be the day. I didn’t know what to expect in the museum. New Orleans is a strange city. It’s kind of in between as far as cities go. It’s a famous city, but it’s not a very large city, and it’s not as if you hear the New Orleans Museum of Art on the tip of every art lover’s tongue. But I was pleasantly surprised by my visit, and since it’s free, I plan on going back more frequently, especially since I didn’t see half of what I wanted to. I thought I’d take you on a little tour of some of my favorite pieces from the museum.
First, as you can see from the banners in the second photo, they were having a photography exhibition called the Art of Caring. Because the photos were on loan, I wasn’t able to take pictures in that gallery, but it was incredible. I will confess I teared up a time or two because of the poignancy of the topics and the way they were presented. But let’s move on to where I could take photos.
|The Lawyer’s Office by Marinus van Reymerswaele|
Have you ever seen a more greedy-looking face than that man on the left? I swear I’ve seen it somewhere before. Hmm… maybe this?
Strikingly similar, I’d say. Here are some details from another 16th century Flemish painting, St. Anthony Dispensing Alms.
This is from the days when children looked like little men. But I think St. Anthony looks kind of judgmental.
I don’t know if I’d apply to him for alms. Upstairs they had some paintings by artists from New Orleans that were lovely.
|Shadows-on-the-Teche by Alberta Kinsey|
|Orleans St, View of St. Louis Cathedral by Colette Pope Heldner|
|Unfinished Portrait of a Woman by Josephine Marien Crawford|
I turned the corner into another gallery and was absolutely delighted to find a painting by one of my favorite artists that I discovered in Munich, Gabriele Muenter.
|Main Street in Murman|
NoMA’s even got a Manet.
So it’s not a major work, but I really like it. Here are some more that I really loved:
|Unique Forms of Continuity in Space by Umberto Boccioni|
|Roman Holiday, detail by Frank Markham Skipworth|
|The Good Shepherd by Henry Ossawa Tanner|
The museum also has some really good modern galleries.
|Two Seated Figures with Flowers by Ida Rittenberg Kohlmeyer|
The painting in the above photo has amazing texture, and the artist must have used buckets of paint. I tried to get a good picture from the side.
Each image is comprised of the other, so Marilyn is made up of hundreds of tiny Maos, if you can see in the detail below.
One final piece:
|NOLA Pink by Banksy|
The above piece is by Banksy. I didn’t realize it until after I had taken the picture. As much as I love the image, when I found out it was by Banksy, I didn’t want to see it in a museum. I guess I wanted to see it on the street. I love the idea of anonymous art that is temporary – something Banksy represents to me as a graffiti artist. I’m sure his work is on display in other museums as well, but I wish they weren’t.
I love a museum that is its own work of art. The Louvre is like that, along with the Musee D’Orsay. I think NoMA comes pretty close. It’s a beautiful building. There had been a wedding the week before at the building, and these flower arrangements were still vibrant. You could smell them throughout the great hall. I loved it, but the security guard with allergies wasn’t such a fan.
The museum has a huge decorative arts collection and a third floor of Asian and Oceanic Art that I didn’t get to. I also didn’t have time to see the gallery of Faberge eggs, so I can’t wait to go back.