Tuesday, July 9, 2013


So we return you once again to the Phoenix Art Museum.  

There is a cowboy art gallery but I didn't know one could take photos when I went through it.  I was struck to see an Alexander Calder drawing leading it off.

In the Western America gallery, there are some beautiful sculptures of Native Americans on display.

There is also a model of the famous sculpture by artist Auguste Rodin - The Kiss.

Among other pieces that caught my eye was a painting - The Leek Seller - by the Polish/French artist Alfred Swieykowski. (gesundheit!)

One work in the Latin American collection couldn't be ignored.  It is a huge three-panel work with brilliant colors.

It shows a scene, presumably in a church in Mexico, where a man portraying Jesus is about to be hung on a crucifix.  The combination of modern-day dress and historically costumed figures is fascinating.  I sat and stared at this for quite awhile.

SWMBO was caught studying a piece in the Modern Art gallery.  She probably liked the colors but was at a loss to explain the painting's meaning.

She was probably more oblivious of the work on a wall behind her.

It's an immense work composed of lines of paint.  Sort of like a prism.  It's pretty but . . .?

Speaking of being confused, the next two photos show a work built from charred pieces of wood that came from a church after it was struck by lightning.  They are suspended on filament from the ceiling in a cube-shape.

The pieces of charcoal drift slowly creating a shadow pattern on the floor.  It is fascinating but confusing.  Perhaps created just to make one think.

Also in this area a work by the artist Chuck Close.  

It resembles a photograph but is actually a weaving of thousands of strands of thread of only eight colors.  Close is an artist of infinite patience as is shown by this work and by other huge portraits he has created with dots of paint.

One of SWMBO's favorites is the Thorne Rooms collection.  The Phoenix museum owns some 20 of them.

They are miniature rooms, some duplicating rooms in actual houses, created mainly by an Indiana native, Narcissa Niblack Thorne.  She had created miniature pieces during her travels and began creating rooms to house them.  In her creations, one inch equals one foot.  They are intricate and lovely.  I particularly liked this art deco room.

We have seen them many times over the years but we always return.

And one of my favorite areas of the museum is the Asian Collection with a rotating display of works.  I love Oriental art.  (I have my own collection of inexpensive Buddha statues.)  But the works in this collection are truly stunning.

So ends this visit to the Phoenix Art Museum.  I hope you've enjoyed the tour.  If you are in the area, you should visit in person.  It's a treat for sure.


Tom Cochrun said...

Very cool. The Leek Seller looks like a Laurence Olivier portrayal. The Art Deco room looks ready for Nick and Nora Charles.

Tom said...

Maybe art, and particularly modern art, doesn't need to be understood, just observed and absorbed. If so I'm off the hook. Now the statues and room layouts appeal to my simple, unsophisticated soul.

(An unrelated point, Bruce, relating to an earlier comment on my post "Exploring Nostalgia". There is evidence apparently that neuron cells can be replaced. I looked up 'replaceable neuron cells' on the web and had a good read of conflicting reports.)

quilteddogs said...

Have loved the Thorne Miniatures since I was a little girl going on school field trips to the museum. I could never get enough so I bought the book on one of my trips to the Art Institute of Chicago where the majority of the rooms are. So glad you have the time to visit these sights and blog about them.

Steve said...

Thanks for entertaining me.

Stephen Hayes said...

Thanks for the tour. I've never been to this museum but now I realize I need to put it on my bucket list.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

Ah, Cochrun, you're definitely a child of the media!

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

Tom I our simple, unsophisticated souls match.

Hmmm, I think I'm glad that my neurons are replaceable.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

I'd love to see them. Seems like there are some in Indianapolis, too.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

You're welcome.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

"Palette", the museum restaurant isn't bad either. Let me know when you'll be in town.

Sharon said...

Wow, that was a nice little visit to one of my favorite places. Next time you go you should visit the Phillip C Curtis room (it's over near the restaurant). There is just something about his work that appeals to me. It's a little surreal. He was also a founder of the Phoenix Art Museum.
About that Mexican Restaurant with the fence. I didn't eat there. I've eaten there in the past and wasn't impressed.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

Sharon, I had a feeling you liked the museum, too. I was just looking at a map of the museum. Don't know how we missed the Curtis room. We walked right by it several times. Next time.

Thérèse said...

So much to reflect upon... There is always something new to discover in this wonderful museum. For today I will reflect on the Latin American painting: fascinating.

Judy said...

That was a fun and interesting visit that you took us on. I haven't been there in years.
You are right, our little town was very busy yesterday. I think they did a nice job of putting everything together in such a short time.

Phil Perisich said...

Thanks for the tour, Bruce. It looks like it is time for a revisit. Lots of new stuff.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

Yes, I loved that one.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

The memorial was very impressive.

You should come visit the museum.

Bruce Taylor, a.k.a. Catalyst said...

Always something new.