I really don’t want this blog to become a travelogue with best bets and touts on where to stay when you visit different cities. However, I can’t pass up the chance to show you what I saw out my window when I was in NYC. It was an unexpected treat, the receptionist found out that it was my birthday weekend and upgraded me to “a room with a view”…
The hotel is called The New York Palace Hotel and I definitely would recommend it. It is located in a very good spot, close to everything in the midtown area. Rockefeller Plaza, Radio City Music Hall, Central Park, Fifth Avenue, Madison Avenue, subways, buses, MoMA…all of these are within walking distance of this hotel. The staff is very friendly and the concierges worked hard to get me a table at a good restaurant at very short notice.
Speaking of MoMA, I went on Sunday (before I went to Pippin on Broadway) and, as usual, I enjoyed myself enormously. I decided to become a member which allowed me into the advanced showing of their new exhibit “from Hopper to O’Keefe”. I spent some time really looking at all the paintings and sculptures, trying to see how they achieved certain effects. I would stand really close and look at the brush strokes. I could see how one artist used pencil to outline what he would paint and then change his mind and not paint everything he had planned. Sometimes looking at the details can change how you view the whole. I especially love doing this with Hopper, his paintings are so precise and yet up close that precision wavers a little bit.
The best photographic example of this is when I was in front of a very large Jackson Pollock (in another section of the museum). I’m not enamored of his work, although I can appreciate that it was harder to do than most people think. To me, the art of his paintings come from detailed shots, vignettes, short stories. Looking at the painting closely shows fascinating changes in saturation and texture. My eye finds it easier to make sense of the chaos when looking at smaller sections of it.
So next time you are in a museum, or even in front of a painting in your house, stand close to it and maybe to the side a little and really look at a small section of it. It might change how you see the painting in the future.