Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Travel Reads: Guggenheim Museum, New York City

It was near darkness although it was about 4 in the evening. It had rained and one of my mittens was lost on a hop-on coach. My hands froze and I was more obstinate than ever that I had to be at Guggenheim. Time was limited and I would leave the following day. Of course, Guggenheim was on my list of priorities even before I traveled to the city. My reason to be there in the first place was to see some of the works by Andy Warhol. Warhol mesmerized and continues to mesmerize generations of art lovers with his depictions of pop art. Unfortunately, all that I happened to see was just one piece of work on display and that was a dampener. However the whole experience of being at Guggenheim was exhilarating and fresh. It had exhibits that oozed a flavor of the cool, zany, artistic, bizarre and breath-taking. It includes an assortment of the Impressionist, Post-impressionist, Modern and Contemporary art.

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, widely known as Guggenheim is situated at the Upper East Side of Manhattan in NYC. Established by the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation in 1939 as the Museum of Non-Objective Painting, it was named after its founder Solomon R. Guggenheim after his death in 1952. He was an American philanthropist, art collector and entrepreneur. He was guided and advised in this venture by his friend and artist, Hilla Rebay. The museum referred to as the ‘temple of the spirit’was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The building from the outside is white and modern while it appears spiraling up to the top; uniquely enough, it is wider at the top. On entering the museum, one just walks up the spiral while a lot of the display of contemporary art is exhibited at the center. One must not miss out on its roof. The whole place appears spacious.

I remember seeing the works of Vasily Kandinsky, Pablo Picasso, Auguste Renoir, Claude Monet, Edouard Manet, Paul Gauguin, Paul C├ęzanne and of course Andy Warhol. There were several others and I was a novice to a lot of the exhibit and artists. Having said that whatever constitutes education, fine arts, civilization and evocative of thought, Guggenheim is a splendid example of it. It is no wonder that it is an icon of culture and art.

(Article by Kabita Sonowal) 

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