It’s International Museum Day. I adore museums. I get the same feeling going into a museum as I do when I go into an airport. Apparently I have an affinity for cold white spaces. I feel like I have a fairly decent working knowledge of museums here and abroad.
Surprisingly enough, Oklahoma has fun museums. Bartlesville has the Price Tower Arts Center. It’s a Frank Lloyd Wright building. It houses Bruce Goff drawings and other cool things that are nerdy. Bartlesville also has Woolaroc. If you have lived in Bartlesville for any length of time, you have probably been there. Woolaroc is a huge nature preserve and houses tons of Native American art. It’s very cool.
Norman has the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art and the Sam Noble Museum of Natural History. Oklahoma City has the Oklahoma City Museum of Art and the Oklahoma History Museum. I’ve been to all of them. Actually, last week I went on Tom Beard’s field trip to the History Museum. It was quite the adventure. I was responsible for 5 4th graders. I believe the words, “I’m never having children” came out of my mouth. I take it back now, I guess, but they were wanderers.
And here’s the thing. Why? What is the point of wandering? Where exactly do they think they are going? They are 10 year olds. Do they plan on hailing a cab and going out on the town? They really need to think these things out. Anyway, I had a ton of fun with them. They said ridiculous things and made me laugh. 4th graders know just enough to be dangerous.
Back to museums. I went to Europe last summer and last Christmas break. I went to museums on each of these excursions. I’m a very slow museum patron. Usually the girls I was traveling with would just give me a time to meet them outside. I would use all of my allotted time. I have two favorite museums, one in England one in Paris.
In England there is a great museum called the Portrait Gallery. Each summer there is a contest called the BP Portrait awards. Artists from all of the world submit a piece to this contest and around 70 are selected. Various awards are given out. Top three. Best young artist. Crowd favorite. Etc. Etc.
I sort of got obsessed with this exhibit. I can still mentally walk through the layout. I went a couple of times. Don’t judge. But I bought one print that I loved.
Here’s the link to the BP Portrait awards. It’s awesome. You will love it.
Now for my other favorite. The Musee d’Orsay is in Paris. It is lovely. It’s an impressionist museum. It is in an old renovated train station. There is a huge amazing clock on the wall and nearly every painting is something you would recognize. Going to Orsay was on my bucket list. Walking through that museum for the first time was one of my most favorite days. I had on one of those outfits that makes you feel awesome and I just wandered. Not in the 4th grade king of way, but in the you are finally in a place you have been dreaming about for years sort of way. I was nothing less than blissfully pleased.
Anyway, I love museums.
Not all who wander are lost.