Saturday, August 30, 2008

Chihuly at the de Young Museum in San Francisco

Chris and I had an amazing time in San Francisco. We got a chance to visit my good friend Shay and her new baby and found time to see two major exhibits. The Chihuly exhibit at the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park was simply extraordinary. The museum itself is stunning, spearing towards the sky from the earth. 
The Chihuly exhibit was jaw-droppingly impressive. I had seen his installation at the Bellagio in Vegas but the sheer scale and scope of this show was the ultimate in eye candy. I found myself truly surprised by the large size of many of his works. The boats are life-size while the chandeliers are easily 5 feet in diameter. I may have to take some glass classes now.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Frida Kahlo at SFMOMA

I always liked Frida Kahlo's work but had no idea of the scope of her life's work before I saw this retrospective at the SFMOMA in San Francisco. 
The work was visceral and raw, filled with  anguished personal meaning. Her powerful imagery and narratives were inspiring. I would love to capture that much emotion in my own work.
I especially enjoyed the dozens of black and white photographs from the artist's private collection, which gave the viewer an intimate glimpse into her life. Many pictures featured her in dusty courtyards with flowers in her hair and monkeys on her shoulder. I had never realized these elements of her self-portraits were not fictional constructs.
This self-portrait with its necklace of thorns and dead bird really resonated with me.