Art is my religion

I hadn’t known it was going to be there. I’d seen some incredible paintings as I went from room to room, darting between the other visitors to get close enough to observe the brush marks before standing back to take in the whole. I was thrilled that we were allowed to take photographs and took full advantage of this, snapping away with my iPhone, recording the theatre around me, my fellow patrons like actors in a show. And then suddenly there it was — Les Desmoiselles d’Avignon by Picasso, hanging on a wall. The painting i’d been obsessed with at school, the one I’d pored over in books, copying the faces into my own sketch book as I learned more about Cubism. It was bigger than I’d thought it would be. It was bold and beautiful and it blew me away, so much so that tears came and I let them leak out the corners of my eyes. The people around me must have thought I was nuts, but I really couldn’t help it. There is not much in this world that makes me cry, but that Wednesday morning I was moved to tears standing among strangers in the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

The same thing happened as I stood before Modigliani’s Recling Nude. Tears and a thumping heart. And a few quizzical stares directed my way.

I was already tired and overwhelmed by the tour, and my emotions were sitting pretty close to the surface. But there was something about being so close to these amazing works of art — created by human hands, cherished by so many — that touched me so deeply. The galleries were so quiet, people speaking in hushed tones, listening to their headsets as they walked around. It was like being in a church dedicated to art, and I truly felt the reverance that the paintings demanded. It was the only time during my entire stay in New York that I wished I’d been with someone I knew, so I could turn to them and say: aren’t people amazing? Look what we can do!

I absolutely adored the MOMA. Loved the art and the space and the food in the cafe on the 5th floor. I loved how friendly and helpful the stewards were, and how the museum let visitors use their cameras. This wasn’t the case when I visited the Guggenheim a few days later and it was quite comical watching the stewards (who looked like security guards) running up to people brandishing cameras: “No photos!”. It made no sense to me. Why was someone taking a snap with an iPhone such a bad thing? Surely art appreciation is to be encouraged, and if I wanted a crappy low-res shot of the Rothko to take home with me — a little memory to treasure, a bit of proof that I’d seen it! — why not let me? (I took it anyway. And yes, a man rushed over and told me off ;-)

The only place you were allowed to take pictures was standing in the atrium looking up at the (admittedly awesome) glass roof. Of course, i ignored this rule and took a few more sneaky shots as I walked round (and round) the building:

The Rineke Dijkstra retrospective (above) was fantastic and definitely worth the visit (a female photographer celebrated in a New York museum, no less. My heart soared.) And yes, the building itself is amazing and I’m glad I took the time to see it, though I might not go back, now that I have. The MOMA, however, will see me again, that’s for sure.

Does art (or music, or theatre, or any of the other creative arts) make you cry too?

Something for the weekend

So this is the 51st Something for the weekend! Little did i know when I posted the first that this would turn into a weekly thing. Not bored of it yet, though SFTW will now be on hold until I get back from the tour — if you want to look back through all the posts they are listed under ‘inspiration‘ in the categories list in the sidebar —>

Loving the new Moleskine postal notebooks

Green cheesy mish mash soup | cinnamon vanilla sunflower butter | the mojito smoothie

[video] Beirut’s video for The Rip Tide is amazing

The best wedding invitation ever. Fact.

50 ways to open your world to new possibilities

The Book Tour. from Photobird on 8tracks.

[video] Was actually quite interested to hear Jamie Oliver’s thoughts on Instagram

The Little Free Library

50 inspirational quotes to power up your inner bassass

RIP Nora Ephron – ‘baby fish mouth’ will always be my favourite line from a film

The camera garden of Andre Feliciano

How to read 7 books in 7 days

Vancouver is nearly full! Details about the NYC and Toronto events coming next week

And finally, this is without doubt the most entertaining video I have seen all year. I recommend you watch it full screen, ladies. You’re welcome.

Something for the weekend

[video] This is important (so beautifully shot)

How to make a book cover disguise for your wireless router

Flab, cellulite and dangling arm fat

Spicy, irreverent and awesome: Dear Coquette

[video] I’m absolutely loving the GoodLife Project from Jonathan Fields

Thrilled to be sharing a guest post about surviving loss over on the Maven Circle this week

100 things to do instead of procrastinating on the internet *ahem*

Why the 21st century author is an internet entrepreneur

No, we will NOT say “woo hoo” for our “froo froo”

This is brilliant: (via Karen)

We celebrated the summer solstice with letters to the universe sent up in the fire, followed by a steak dinner and too much wine :) I love my family.

The hand drawn map of London

Don’t throw tennis balls at cars

10 fruits to try before you die (yeah… i have some catching up to do)

[video] the making of the Leica M9-P (Edition Hermes)

And finally, the winner of the giveaway is Adrienne! Email coming shortly xo

Something for the weekend

[video] Aimee Mullins: How my legs gave me superpowers

For Chrissakes, there is nothing wrong with you: a dating manifesto (sweary & awesome)

For the last few months I’ve made a conscious effort to cut out most carbs and sugar (the photo above was one of my last puddings – savoured every mouthful ;-), and it’s made such a difference to my bod — read/watch these: Why our food is making us fat | I quit sugar

The dawn of the colour photograph

Enjoyment is in the waiting

How to be the most organised person in the world (via Rachel)

50 inspiring children’s books with a positive message

“I’m jealous of Sarah Walton”

The ________’s Daughter (via Chris)

Liking Grove’s skateback cover for the iPhone

When I hit an emotional wall a few weeks back, Tanya was there for me on Skype. She is the real deal — go watch her on TGtv!

Inspiring commencement addresses

A primer for blogging from Mr Brogan

A great post about iPhone apps to try

Surreal door installations

The Bill Murray colouring book!


And finally, some more blog book tour goodness happening today:

an interview & giveaway with Brene Brown

a guest post over on Sfgirlbybay

Denise & I chat about how we met (if you’ve read the book, Denise is the friend I mention in Chapter 6 :)

Enjoy! x