Princeton University Art Museum

The Princeton University Art Museum (PUAM) is the Princeton University‘s gallery of art, located in Princeton, New Jersey. Founded in 1882, it now houses over 72,000 works of art that range from antiquity to the contemporary period. The Princeton University Art Museum dedicates itself to supporting and enhancing the university’s goals of teaching, research, and service in fields of art and culture, as well as to serving regional communities and visitors from around the world.

Fall-2013,-Princeton,-Art-Museum,-So amazing that this outstanding collection belongs to a University Art Museum ….just another amazing for Princeton….

If you are familiar with the Cleveland Museum of Art collection,  the Princeton collection includes several similar, and not so similar pieces by the same artists.

This version of the Charles Wilson Peale’s George Washington at Battle of Princeton, similar but very different…

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Hermes at CMA

DSC09764Hermes uses 75,000 uniquely ‘Hermes’ custom colors to create their legendary, heirloom quality, silk scarves, one of fashion’s most coveted accessories.

In their demonstrations at the Cleveland Museum of Art, the experts from Lyon, France talked the enthusiastic audience, of men and women alike, through the actual making of a scarf from start to the fine finish.  DSC09662 DSC09663 DSC09707 DSC09729Henri meticulously places and paints with a separate screen for each and every color in every scarf.  Each and every shade of every color couldn’t be more perfect and matching the screen to the print exactly… every time a talent.  The spectacular colors take your breath away!


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2013 Carnegie International


The Carnegie Museum of Art hosts it’s annual International exhibit as a collection from 35 artist participants from 19 different countries.  It captures your eye and attention from afar upon approach as well as sprinkling the work throughout the entire collection.

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The Carnegie International is the oldest North American exhibition of contemporary art from around the globe. It was first organized at the behest of industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie on November 5, 1896 in Pittsburgh. Carnegie established the International to educate and inspire the public as well as to promote international understanding and peace. He intended the International to provide a periodic sample of contemporary art from which Carnegie Museum of Art could enrich its permanent collection. The work of thousands of artists has been exhibited in the Carnegie International, including that of Winslow HomerJames Abbott McNeill WhistlerMary CassattCamille PissarroAuguste RodinWillem de KooningHenry MooreJackson PollockRené MagritteJoan MiróAlberto GiacomettiAndy WarholJoseph BeuysSigmar Polke, and William Kentridge.

Phyllida Barlow, installation view of Tip, 2013, timber, steel, spray paint, paint, steel mesh, scrim, cement, fabric, and varnish 


Phyllida Barlow is known for her use of scrappy materials and rough construction techniques that contradict and undermine the grand scale of her works, resulting in an ambitiously “anti-monumental” aesthetic.

Notice anything..?

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…the people in these photographs are walking with us down this hallway of photos….

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My favorite is the Hall of Architecture where Andrew Carnegie’s mission in 1907 was to:

“bring likenesses of European masterworks to the people of Western Pennsylvania. “If they cannot go to the objects, which allure people abroad,” he stated in 1895, ”we shall do our best to bring the rarest of those objects to them at home.” Containing over 150 individual plaster casts of sculptures and monuments from all over the world..”

taken from the 2013 Carnegie International Guide Book

Artist Gabriel Sierra, as part of the exhibit repainted the walls a rich purple:

..  and adding discrete sculptural elements-is a conceptual and witty approach to the history of the storied space

taken from the 2013 Carnegie International Guide Book


NYC … Museum Mile and More….

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New York Walking Tour: Moseying Down Museum Mile


It’s not as if Manhattan needs a marketing maven to designate it the cultural capital of the world. But in 1978 some clever curators came up with the moniker Museum Mile for the stretch of Fifth Avenue from 105th Street to 82nd Street that houses no fewer than nine world-class museums, most with shops and cafés.

The Frick Collection

The Frick mansion was designed by Carrere and Hastings, the same architects who worked on the New York Public Library, and was built to “make Carnegie’s place look like a miner’s shack.” Preserved on Millionaire’s Row, the mansion is a grand setting for an incredible collection of European painting and decorative arts. The enclosed inner courtyard is a perfect place for weary art lovers to take a rest.

1 E. 70th St. (btw Madison & 5th Ave)

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Ahhhh…the Met!


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Look at this cute couple resting?….They found just the place to take 5 (and maybe a little people watching while they’re at it?) ?  Looks easy enough except in reality you walk until your legs won’t take you another step only to realize there is no relief in site…one more step, one more block, one more place…..

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, located in New York City, is the largest art museum in the United States, and one of the ten largest in the world, with the most significant art collections.[6] Its permanent collection contains more than two million works, divided among seventeen curatorial departments.[7] The main building, located on the eastern edge of Central Park along Manhattan’s Museum Mile, is by area one of the world’s largest art galleries. There is also a much smaller second location at “The Cloisters” in Upper Manhattan that featuresmedieval art.[8]

82nd & Fifth: A web series       

6,464 views 8 months ago

82nd & Fifth is the Met’s address in New York City. It is also the intersection of art and ideas. We’ve invited 100 curators from across the Museum to talk about 100 works of art that changed the way they see the world. Eleven Museum photographers interpret their vision: one work, one curator, two minutes at a time.82nd & Fifth is a year-long series of 100 episodes. Throughout 2013, new releases will appear every Wednesday. Sign up for email announcements so you never miss
The Museum of the City of New York was founded in 1923 by Henry Collins Brown, a Scottish-born writer with a vision for a populist approach to the city. The Museum was originally housed in Gracie Mansion, the future residence of the Mayor of New York. Hardinge Scholle succeeded Henry Brown in 1926 and began planning a new home for the Museum. The City offered land on Fifth Avenue on 103rd-104th Streets and construction for Joseph H. Freedlander’s Georgian Colonial-Revival design for the building started in 1929 and was completed in 1932. During the next few decades, the Museum amassed a considerable collection of exceptional items, including several of Eugene O’Neill’s handwritten manuscripts, a complete room of Duncan Phyfe furniture, 412 glass negatives taken by Jacob Riis and donated by his son, a man’s suit worn to George Washington’s Inaugural Ball, and the Carrie Walter Stettheimer dollhouse, which contains a miniature work by Marcel Duchamp. Today the Museum’s collection contains approximately 750,000 objects, including prints, photographs, decorative arts, costumes, paintings, sculpture, toys, and theatrical memorabilia.
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The James Turrell exhibit was the most amazing installataion experience between the size of the space and the overwhelming color shock!  Picture taking was not allowed, not that a camera could capture it.  If you get the chance, check out the link.
James Turrell’s exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum will probably be the bliss-out environmental art hit of the summer. This is primarily because of the ravishing “Aten Reign,” an immense, elliptical, nearly hallucinatory play of light and color that makes brilliant use of the museum’s famed rotunda and ocular skylight. The latest site-specific effort from Mr. Turrell, “Aten Reign” is close to oxymoronic: a meditative spectacle.DSC04085
The story behind the The New York Public Library is a great read all by itself!
The New York Public Library (NYPL) is a public library system in New York City. With nearly 53 million items, the New York Public Library is the second largest public library in the United States (and third largest in the world), behind only the Library of Congress. It is an independently managed, nonprofit corporation operating with both private and public financing.
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On my last visit to NY, an gentleman from France that I chatted with over lunch, told me that the Sabarsky cafe has one of the best cappuccinos in town.  Can’t wait to try one for myself!  The cafe is so comfortable and cozy, and with it’s large windows’ view of the bustle of street traffic, it would make a great movie set.
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The Toledo Museum of Art

In appreciation for their staff, donors, volunteers and guests, the Toledo Museum of Art installed a floor to ceiling (salon style) portrait gallery.  What a tribute!

From their website:

“Museum People: Faces of TMA is a collective portrait of nearly 700 individuals—visitors, supporters, volunteers and staff—who are not just the faces but also the heart of the Museum. The images were shot over a period of weeks in the spring by local award-winning photographer Jim Rohman and his assistant Giles Cooper for possible inclusion in the exhibition.

“We wanted to highlight the incredible community of people who support the Museum—people from our local area and from around the world,” said Amy Gilman, associate director and curator of contemporary art.”

Museum People: Faces of TMA

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The Toledo Museum of Art is an internationally known art museum located in the Old West End neighborhood of Toledo, Ohio, United States. The museum was founded by Toledo glassmaker Edward Drummond Libbey in 1901, and moved to its current location, a Greek revival building designed by Edward B. Green and Harry W. Wachter on January 17, 1912.[1] The building was expanded twice in the 1920s and 1930s.[2] Brian Kennedy serves as the museum’s director.

The museum contains major collections of glass art of the 19th and 20th century European and American art, as well as small but distinguished Renaissance, Greek and Roman, and Japanese collections. Notable individual works include Peter Paul Rubens‘s The Crowning of Saint Catherine, significant minor works by Rembrandt and El Greco, and modern works by Willem de Kooning, Henry Moore, and Sol LeWitt, as well as Fragonard’s Blind man’s bluff.

The Toledo Museum of Art

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Detroit Institute of Arts

Where in the World is Diego Rivera………?

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…That’s him in the bowler….blending right into the crowd.  And the story he tells in the Diego Rivera Court Mural packs quit a punch…

DIA - Rivera Court

The Detroit Institute of Art’s signature piece is it’s Diego Rivera Court.  The Museum touts it as one of America’s greatest works and the artist as the best work of his career.  It is truly spectacular!

“The Detroit Industry fresco cycle was conceived by Mexican muralist Diego Rivera (1886–1957) as a tribute to the city’s manufacturing base and labor force of the 1930s. Rivera completed the twenty-seven panel work in eleven months, from April 1932 to March 1933. It is considered the finest example of Mexican mural art in the United States, and the artist thought it the best work of his career.

Rivera was a Marxist who believed that art belonged on public walls rather than in private galleries. He found his medium in the fresco, where paint is applied to wet plaster. Its vast size allowed him to explore grand and complex themes, which would be accessible to a large audience. In Mexico, Rivera’s murals tied modern Mexican culture to its indigenous roots, revealing the ancient Indian cultures as Mexico’s true heritage. Similarly, Rivera’s Detroit Industry murals depict industry and technology as the indigenous culture of Detroit.”

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Diego Rivera Court Tour – Detroit Institute of Art

Rivera includes Edsel Ford (second from right) who subsidized this commission and William Valentiner, (far right) then Director of the Museum in the story.

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“Rivera uses the image of a baby growing in the bulb of a plant to remind us that all human endeavor is rooted in the earth. The women on each side are fertility figures holding fruits, vegetables, and grains grown in Michigan.”

Rivera painted his self portrait into the mural in the man with the bowler.

“the murals (27 in all) are rife with Christian themes and utopian symbolism. ”

Symbolism in Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry Murals – Bridgeman – Art, Culture, History

Detroit Institute of Arts

The National Portrait Gallery

The National Portrait Gallery is dedicated to the exhibition and study of portraits of history and culture and to the study of the artists who created such portraiture. ..

It resides in the National Historic Landmarked Old Patent Office Building … The third oldest federal building in the city, constructed between 1836 and 1867, the marble andgranite museum has porticoes modeled after the Parthenon in AthensGreece.

The building was used as a hospital during the American Civil War]

It was spared from demolition by President Dwight Eisenhower in 1958, and given to the Smithsonian, which renovated the structure and opened the National Museum of American Art (later renamed the Smithsonian American Art Museum) and National Portrait Gallery there in 1968.

Hallmarks of the National Portrait Gallery’s permanent collection include the famous “Lansdowne” portrait of George Washington; the Hall of Presidents; and its extensive selection of portraits of remarkable Americans from all walks of life.

From Wikipedia

“I have been known to call the Portrait Gallery a ‘dinner party with history’.  What I mean is that visiting here is like going to a place filled with the most extraordinary people one would ever hope to meet.  They are women and men who come from everywhere in the country and the world , whose cultural origins and fields of achievements are as varied as the society in which we live and who have had the good fortune to be captured on canvas, on film, on paper or in marble or bronze by artists who have responded to their spirit,  and given them the chance to be introduced to generations to come.  Welcome to our world and yours.”  Marc Pachter, Director National Portrait Gallery

Woman Eating, 1971 – Duane Hanson

The Tretyakov Gallery; Moscow, Russia

Founded in 1856 by the wealthy merchant, Pavel Tretyakov, the Tretyakov has the largest collection of Russian art in the world.  Thankfully our travel companion Zoya has a rich cultural background.  She was the perfect tour guide.  The art was spectacular beyond words on its own, she brought it to life.  I can’t thank you enough Zoya!  Your time and sharing during the entire trip was a priceless gift!

Ilya Repin, ‘Ivan the Terrible and His Son Ivan’ 1581

Portrait of Anton Chekov

Vasily Pukirev, Misalliance, 1862

Karl Bryullov, ‘Rider’, 1832


The Hermitage, St. Petersburg City Hall, American Embassy


Russia - Hermitage, St. Petersburg City Hall, American Embassy

The State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia is one of the largest museums in the world, with three million works of art  and one of the oldest art galleries and museums of human history and culture in the world. The vast Hermitage collections are displayed in six buildings, the main one being the Winter Palace which used to be the official residence of the Russian Tsars9-25-2012 Russia 6502 - Version 2

Catherine the Great started the famed collection in 1764 by purchasing more than 225 paintings from Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky, after bankruptcy in the year before. Gotzkowsky provided 225 paintings to the Russian crown, to be able satisfy to his obligations. Flemish and Dutch masters such as Dirck van Baburen, Hendrick van Balen, RembrandtRubens, Jacob Jordaens, Antoon van Dyck, Hendrick Goltzius, Frans Hals, Jan Steen and Gerrit van Honthorst formed the basis and the beginning of the collection in the Hermitage. Russian ambassadors in foreign capitals were commissioned to acquire the best collections offered for sale: Brühl’s collection in Saxony, Crozat’s in France, and the Walpole gallery inEngland. Catherine called her art gallery my hermitage, as very few people were allowed within to see its riches. In one of her letters she lamented that “only the mice and I can admire all this.” She also gave the name of the Hermitage to her private theatre, built nearby between 1783 and 1787.9-25-2012 Russia 6503 - Version 2

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The collection of the State Hermitage includes more than three million works of art and artefacts of the world culture.

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Antonio Canova

It is said that if one spends 1 minute in front of each museum exibit, it would take 10 years to see them all.

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Rembrandt – Danae

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Rembrandt – Flora

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Rembrandt – Return of the Prodigal Son

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Botero – Still Life w Watermelon

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Marquet – Notre Dame

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Renior – Woman on a Stair

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Cezanne – Blue Landscape

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Van Gogh – Madame Trabuc

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Renior – Ladies of Arles

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Matisse – Lady on a Terrace

Matisse - Music

Matisse – Music

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Matisse – Dance

Matisse - Young Woman in Blue Blouse

Matisse – Young Woman in Blue Blouse

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Matisse – Woman in Green

Matisse - Family Portrait

Matisse – Family Portrait

Matisse - Conversation

Matisse – Conversation

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Matisse – Portrait of the Artist’s Wife

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Kees van Dongen – Lady in a Black Hat

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Picasso – Violin and Guitar

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Church of the Birth of St. John the Baptist (Chesme Church)
Built alongside the Chesme Palace as an Imperial posting house on the way to Tsarskoe Selo, this wedding-cake gothic building is one of the most unusual and attractive in St. Petersburg..

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City Hall Building, St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg was named for its founder, Tsar Peter I, better known as Peter the Great. He was the grandson of Mikhail Romanov, founder of the Romanov dynasty that ruled Russia from 1613 until the Russian revolution in 1917. Peter’s rise to power was not as easy as most monarchs. He was the son of Tsar Alexis (1645-1676) and his second wife. In order to become Tsar, Peter had to deal with his older half sister Sophie who was ruling Russia. After building up loyalty among the army, Peter overthrew Sophie and sent her to a convent in Moscow in 1689. In May 1703 Peter laid the cornerstone of the fortress he named St. Petersburg, in honor of the guardian of the gates of heaven. (And, coincidentally, his name!) Peter built a shipyard across the Neva River from the fortress, giving Russia a European trading seaport and important access to the West. In 1712, Peter moved the capital from Moscow to St. Petersburg and required all of the aristocracy to (1) move there, (2) build lavish homes for themselves, and most importantly, (3) contribute to paying for the construction of the government buildings there. Peter had studied fortification and shipbuilding in Western Europe and greatly influenced the design of the city with his ideas.City Hall of St. Petersburg

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City Hall from the inside looking out.

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Russian interpreter.

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Portrait of Lenin in City Hall.

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Lenin’s office is kept as it was when he last left it…this is the desk of his admin, right out side his door.

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Lenin had a cot in room around the corner of his office that use to catch some rest.

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Lenin’s desk as he left it.

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This reception at the American Embassy on September 11th began with a moment of remembrance of that fateful day.  What am amazing feeling it was to be in Russia and paying tribute to 9/11 – 11 time zones from home where the news was no doubt all about remembrance.

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