Sunday, May 30, 2021

Window Shopping in London

I enjoy a little window shopping no matter what city I am in but I have to admit that London does an outstanding job of dressing up shop windows.  The last time I was there, I snapped a few photos of some of the ones that appealed to me.

Chanel, Valentino, Armani, Gucci, can find them all in these lovely windows.

I found this "cat lady" dress rather amusing.  It was probably extremely expensive too.  As with all of these stores, I didn't go inside to find out.

These outrageously high, platform shoes caught my eye.  I wouldn't buy or heaven forbid, wear them but they certainly push the envelope on the style scale.

It's fun to just look at all these things and realize that there are people out there who actually do buy and wear these clothes.  I would love to have seen a woman walk in these shoes!

Sunday, May 23, 2021

The Dazzling Art of Dale Chihuly


I was inspired to do another post about my visit to Chihuly Garden and Glass.  I visited there in May of 2018 and was simply blown away by the beauty inside his gorgeous museum.  Ever since Chihuly did the very first exhibit at the Desert Botanical Garden here in Phoenix, I have been wildly in love with his creations.

The museum itself winds the visitor through a series of rooms each with spectacular displays.  You can see everything from small crafted items to giant chandelier-like sculptures.

The smaller sculptures come in all shapes, sizes and colors.

Many of the rooms were dark with spotlights that lit up the displays.  That way of displaying these gems made them stand out and glow.

In the room with the boats filled with orbs and reeds and other sculptures, I liked the highly polished floor that reflected the glass just like water.

I posted about this wonderful place back in 2018.  You can see that post here if like me, you can't get enough of Chihuly's artistry.

As you make your way through the museum, the walk ends when you enter a huge glass atrium with more sculptures hanging from the ceiling and then out into a garden where more sculptures live among the plants.  I have a post dedicated to the garden area here.  

In addition to his masterful glass art, Chihuly is also quite the collector.  The restaurant at Chihuly Garden and Glass features items from his vast collections.  Everything from vintage radios to accordions.  I posted scenes from the collection here.

Chihuly Garden and Glass is a place I'd highly recommend visiting.  If I make another trip to Seattle, you can bet I will visit this place again.

Sunday, May 16, 2021

Wandering in the V & A


Last week I had a post about an exhibit at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London that was either just arriving or was about to depart.  I thought I'd follow up with a post about some of the other things I saw while wandering in that fabulous museum.

Let's start with the spectacular Chihuly glass sculpture that hangs just inside the entrance hall.  I love Chihuly's wonderful glass works and I love seeing this one every time I visit this museum.

After admiring Chihuly's glass work, I wandered into a room full of sculptures from all over the world.

At the end of that room was a grand entrance portal.  

I moved on the another long room that was full of more sculptures and busts.

I admired this bust of George II dated 1760 by John Michael Rysbrack.  King George II died in 1760 so it is thought that this bust was created as a commemoration.  

This is Lady Catherine Stepney a novelist and London Society hostess.  She is credited with writing six novels.  The artist for this one is Richard Cockle Lewis. 

Near the row of white marble busts was this statue by Auguste Rodin.  The sculpture depicts St. John the Baptist.  The description says that the model for this sculpture was an Italian peasant.  

I'll finish this little walk around the museum with this bust of Albert Einstein.  It was created by Jacob Epstein in 1933.  Epstein had just fled Nazi Germany and was staying in a refugee camp in Britain when he created this sculpture.  Epstein later described Einstein's "wild hair floating in the wind".  He also wrote that "his glance contained a mixture of the humane, the humorous and the profound".  

These all are just a very, very few of the things to see at the V & A.  It's a place not to be missed.

Sunday, May 9, 2021

Exhibit In Transition


On my last trip to London, I spent one afternoon wandering through the Victoria & Albert Museum.  The V & A is one of many fabulous museums to explore in the city of London.  I wandered into a room where things looked a bit different. There were no workmen around so I couldn't tell if this was an exhibit that was arriving at the museum or if it was being packed up to be shipped somewhere else.

Even though I had no idea what this exhibit was about, I still found it fascinating to see how such important pieces are packed and shipped from museum to museum.  

I can't begin to imagine how those huge columns are going to be moved.

This was in the fall of 2016.  I don't know if this exhibit was arriving or leaving but the process for packing was interesting to view.

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Montezuma Castle National Monument


Back in 2019 when we were all able to travel, I stopped at Montezuma Castle National Monument on my way home from a trip to Flagstaff Arizona.  I've been to this place many times before but it's one of those places that you can visit over and over and still see something new.

The ruins here were built by the Sinagua people who had been living in this area since the year 650.  Around 1050 they started building cliff dwellings like this one and pueblos in other areas.  

This particular dwelling is described as a 20-story high-rise built into the side of this cliff.  

There is a cut-away model on view at the park to help us imagine what living there might have been like.

In the lower right of this photo you can see the remains of a wall along the cliff face and below the cliff dwelling.  

At the bottom of this canyon is the stream of water that provided life's most important basic need.  In spite of this water supply, this place was abandoned around the year 1400.  No one knows exactly why.  The Sinagua people had no written language so historians can only speculate.

 Whatever their reason for moving away, there is no doubt they left something spectacular behind.  When you enter the canyon, you walk a way before you catch sight of this marvel.  It quite literally stops you in your tracks.  It is an amazing sight.