Saturday, December 3, 2005

Look, Baudelaire!

Survived the crazyness at Ickworth on Wednesday...we had about 500 people through, as far as I could tell. It went REALLY well and everyone loves the new space. Freda and I are going over today to help out with the Christmas Wreath making. John and I will probably hang our new handmade wreath from the balcony rather than on our front door, for 2 reasons.
1. Nobody but our pothead neighbors see our front door (we're in a teeny little hallway)
2. Our pothead neighbors might take the wreath down and try to smoke it.

Balcony it is.

Went to London on Thursay morning (after sleeping for 12 hours), since John was there for the week to install the new phone system. Met him around lunchtime on Thursday, dropped my stuff at the hotel, then went to Wagamama for lunch. The same one that Julia and Andrea and I went to when we were in London a few years ago. It's right around the corner from the National Gallery, which was great since that was my next stop. There's some GREAT stuff- I'm such a sucker for the Impressionists after taking an art history course in Paris. It's really cool to see the original work after I've seen it as a slide and learned all about it.

The art history course took place in the biggest lecture hall I've ever seen, in the basement of the Jardin de Luxembourg campus of the Sorbonne. Our professor was way at the front, with his little slide projector remote and a laser pointer. During one class, we were looking at Manet's Music in the Tuileries Garden, and our professor was telling us all about how Manet painted himself and a whole bunch of his friends into the picture. He picked up his laser pointer and very clearly pointed out Manet, and then said, "VOILA, c'est Baudelaire." (Look, it's Baudelaire). And waved his laser pointer all over the picture. Some smartass in the back called out, "WHERE??" and the prof repeated his motion. The class started laughing and it became a running joke that anytime he showed us a painting with a crowd scene, someone would shout out, "VOILA! BAUDELAIRE!"

So then when I saw the painting at the National Gallery on Thursday, I was standing in front of it, chuckling about Baudelaire. As I read the caption, I saw that they ALSO mentioned Baudelaire, but didn't say where in the picture he's standing. Oh will have to remain one of life's great mysteries.

Yesterday I went to the Tate Britain, at Liz's recommendation. She was right, it's a very cool museum. It's a total mishmash of British art, but the rooms are fantastic. They have two rooms of John Constable's works- I didn't realize that he grew up about 20 miles from here and painted the landscape all over Suffolk. It was neat looking at famous art that looks like the view out Freda and Travis' living room window.

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