Saturday, November 20, 2010

A morning at MoMA in New York...

I'm really not a huge fan of galleries and museums, but I did find the time on my New York trip to spend the morning at MoMA (The Museum of Modern Art), as it seemed churlish to travel all that way and not take in some culture (aside from cocktail drinking, that is).

Takashi Murakami, 1996
727 painting Takashi Murakami
With so much choice of places to visit in New York, I'm glad that we opted for somewhere with lots of modern art and design. This is not an exhaustive collection of all the pieces on display at MoMA, just the ones that especially caught my untrained eye.

Double Elvis
Andy Warhol, 1963
Double Elvis Andy Warhol
Obviously there are some installations you have to see yourself, like this one of two fans blowing and suspending some black tape in the air, which you'll discover downstairs in the main foyer.
Two blowing fans installation MoMATwo blowing fans MoMA
It seems so simple, yet it's truly captivating to watch.

Lee Krasner, 1966
Gaea canvas Lee Krasner
I was actually surprised there weren't more unconventional installations like the fans and less paintings (but at least there were some real iconic classics on display).

Drowning Girl
Roy Lichtenstein, 1963
Drowning Girl Roy Lichtenstein
Regular visitors to Jason in Hollywood know that I'm a huge fan of sculptures, so it was nice to wander around The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden to start our tour.

The River
Aristide Maillol, Begun 1938-39; completed 1943 (cast 1948)
The River Aristide MaillolThe River sculpture Aristide Maillol
The bronze sculpture that really caught my eye and was a particular favourite of mine in the outdoor space, was this fantastic goat piece by Pablo Picasso.

Pablo Picasso, 1950 (cast 1952)
She-Goat sculpture Pablo PicassoShe-Goat sculpture Pablo PicassoPablo Picasso She-Goat sculpture
Also on display was a bronze by infamous French sculptor Auguste Rodin. You can also see a similar Rodin piece within the B. Gerald Sculpture Garden at LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art).

Monument to Balzac
Auguste Rodin, 1898 (cast 1854)
Monument to Balzac Rodin sculpture
If you're a fan of sculpture you should also check out these photos from The Getty Center sculpture collection.

Tall Figure, III
Alberto Giacometti, 1960
Tall Figure III sculpture Alberto GiacomettiTall Figure III sculpture Alberto Giacometti
There really is so much to take in at MoMA, from sculpture to paintings, photography, classic design and even helicopters of all things.
Green helicopter MoMA NYCHanging green helicopter MoMASuspended green helicopter MoMA
This suspended green helicopter really did make for a great spectacle, whilst this other helicopter was part of an audio visual presentation about Vietnam, entitled The Farmers and the Helicopters, made in 2006.
Farmers and helicopter MoMA
Other works of art I just appreciated for their quirky, colourful designs.
Japanese Sci-fi poster MoMA
Or their strong cultural significance.

Read My Lips
Gran Fury
Read My Lips Gran Fury
Some I could have stared at for a long time to appreciate their depth, like these two signature drip painted canvases by Jackson Pollock.

One: Number 31, 1950
Jackson Pollock
Jackson Pollock One Number 31, 1950
Number 1A, 1948
Jackson Pollock
Jackson Pollock Number 1A 1948
As I'm running the L.A. Marathon next year for AIDS Project L.A. I was especially drawn to this wall of work and being British, the Guerilla Girls offset poster brought a wry smile to my lips.

It's Even Worse in Europe
Guerilla Girls, 1986
Even Worse In Europe Guerilla GirlsAIDS wall MoMA New York
There's only so much art you can take in in one go sometimes, so even though it was amazing to see iconic works like Andy Warhol thirty-two Campbell's Soup Cans canvases (he really was clever wasn't he?), we only spent a couple of hours drifting through the many floor of the museum.

Campbell's Soup Cans
Andy Warhol, 1962
Campbell's Soup Cans Andy Warhols
I was surprised by the variety of things on display and I certainly wasn't expecting to see cars within the galleries.

Cisitalia 202 GT
Pininfarina (Battista "Pinin" Farina), 1946
Cisitalia 202 GT car MoMA
Now that we've enjoyed the delights of MoMA, I'm sure on our next visit to New York we'll explore the Guggenheim Museum or the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Twenty-Four Greek Y's
David Smith, 1950
Twenty-four Geek Y's David Smith
The great thing about the Museum of Modern Art was that you could take photos as long as you didn't use flash photography inside.

Vir Heroicus Sublimis
Barnett Newman, 1950-51
Vir Heroicus Sublimis Barnett Newman
If like me you've never been before, it's well worth a visit, but also worth knowing it's closed on Tuesdays and open from 10.30am to 5.30pm most other days (aside from Fridays when it stays open until 8.00pm).
Jasper Johns, 1954-55 (dated on reverse 1954)
Flag painting Jasper Johns
That's enough culture for one day. Come back soon for more sights from my recent adventures in New York City....

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