Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Day Out

Second floor gallery; Washington on far left

This weekend was the official start of craft show craziness, but I want to talk about Friday.

Friday was Mario's birthday and, unusual for him, he decided to take the day off work so we could do something.  We started out by taking the bus downtown to have breakfast at our favorite diner, which is being threatened with closure because they want to build a luxury hotel on the site.  (Across the street from another luxury hotel which isn't always full, and down the street from two more.  Don't get me started).

My favorite painting from the American
Impressionists in the Garden exhibit
Then we went to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.  The original plan was to go to the Philadelphia Museum of Art down on the Parkway, but they didn't have any special exhibits on that were intriguing, and neither of us had been to PAFA in ages.  For anyone living in or planning to visit Philly, this is one amazing -- and seriously under-advertised and under-appreciated museum!  It was started in 1805 as an art school and museum, and the building itself is a work of art.  The collections are all American, starting with a trio of Gilbert Stuart and Peale portraits of George Washington, and going all the way to the present.

"Salon" style.  I love the painting in the center.
They had a beautiful exhibit of American Impressionist garden paintings, some drool-worthy Tiffany windows, an entire gallery hung "salon" style, with no labels on the paintings (but gallery guides on the benches).  The theory was that the owner of the paintings would know them all by heart and would guide visitors through, explaining each one.  It looks like a really high end version of the way I cover my walls -- paint is good, but you don't need to see much of it!

Tiffany windows
They also had a few pieces by Maxfield Parrish.  We both have a serious soft spot for Parrish, so we stood in front of the painting of Dream Garden for a while, and then remembered that the Tiffany glass mosaic of Dream Garden is also in town, located at 6th and Walnut Streets.  After we got done at the museum, we walked down there and sat in front of the enormous mosaic for a while.

Stuffed full of art and slightly dizzy with it, we took the bus back home and rested for a bit, because we had dinner reservations (back in town again) at Parc.  Mario's sister always gives us restaurant gift cards for birthdays and holidays, and we'd been stockpiling for a while so that we could have a blow-out dinner.

This was that dinner.  It's a wonder we were able to roll out of bed the next day to start the craft show insanity, but we managed.  The rest of the weekend was sunshine, selling and several forms of exhaustion, all of which were good, and nearly as much fun as our day out on Friday.

Dream Garden - painting by Maxfield Parrish

Dream Garden - glass mosaic by Tiffany Studios

And then there was this.  She's covered in rhinestones.


Anonymous said...

What a delightful way to spend a birthday!
Your writing - I was with you!

Rhonda Buss said...

What a lovely day :)

Anonymous said...

I have 3 Maxfield Parrish prints that I picked up at the MacDade Mall, decades ago. Humpty Dumpty, the Frog Prince, and the illustration that Enya used on one of her albums - can't find the correct name. I never get tired of them.

Lisette M said...

I'm trying to get a day trip to Philly with the family, I hope we can do it this summer and of course we'll have to get together.