Saturday, September 20, 2014

Einstein Goes To The Museum

Starting in March the Carnegie Museum of Natural History hosted an exhibit on race and racism.  Last Thursday I finally found the time to go see it.  I went with a friend and my buddy Einstein. 

I might share my thoughts on that exhibit in another post.  Right now I want to show you how much Einstein enjoyed this field trip.  There were some surprises.

This display of bugs was right near the elevator.  Very natural history-ish.

Einstein does not seem too thrilled.

Einstein seems to often find himself threatened by birds.  Last year it was a big rubber ducky.  This time it's an eagle sculpture.
Einstein once again in peril - is he going to be lunch for the eagle?

Since the Carnegie is both an art museum and a natural history museum, we were not surprised to see people amongst the dinosaurs, honing their drawing skills.  It was a surprise to be looking down on the dinosaurs from above - not the usual vantage point one gets at a museum.
This photo is here mainly to point out that I was at the
museum WITHOUT CHILDREN so I did not HAVE to
 go see the dinosaurs up close.  
We were thrilled to see these guys in an exhibit about birds which we rushed past on the way to the race exhibit:
Foghorn Leghorn and Opus.

After seeing the exhibit on race, we tried to do a mad rush to see the rest of the museum.  First, to the Hall of Sculpture.  It is surprisingly empty of sculpture, unless you count pillars as sculpture.
This room is just crying out for some activity:
a water balloon fight?  a three-legged race?
One wonders if the sculptures have all gone out for tea.
Some clever sculptures on the second level of the Hall of Sculpture
A few more sculptures, but really,
we are not getting our money's worth of
sculptures in this Hall.
Then we rushed down toward the Hall of Architecture, stopping to see Jane on the way.
Einstein said he did want to stop and see this dinosaur.
 Jane was just hanging out in the hallway,
waiting to use the bathroom.  
 The Hall of Architecture, in contrast to the Hall of Sculpture, is crammed full of artistic objects.  My friend said that this has been her favorite part of the museum since childhood, and with good reason.  It has many fascinating things in it.

Sophocles stands guard at the entrance of the Hall of Architecture.
Einstein at the feet of Sophocles.

All of Sophocles with a little bit of Einstein

The Hall of Architecture contains a clash of ancient and modern.  On the left there is the facade of a Romanesque church from 12th century France, details of which I might show you in another post. There are all those majestic pillary things, which we did not even look at, and a piano hanging dangerously from the ceiling.  

The piano is participatory art - the sign encouraged us to not be afraid and to stand under the piano and take a selfie.  Einstein was game.  

Brave Einstein, among 12th and 21st century art.

All I could think of was the Veggie Tales movie of "Esther" where murderous peas try to drop a piano on the king.  I spent as little time as possible helping Einstein get under this piano.

Did a Boy Scout tie that huge knot?
What kind of knot is it, anyway?

Do you enjoy visiting museums?  What's your favorite?

What event would you want to have in that empty Hall of Sculpture?


Joanie said...

In the sculpture room, perhaps we could have a dance. We could all wear clothes like Isadora Duncan wore (minus the fatal long scarf) and do improv dancing to express our feelings as we kept time to a piano soloist and then a violinist, alternately playing their hearts out. We could take breaks and eat grapes and lay on velvet pillows and drink red and white wine and lots of water. Perhaps some pita and hummus! And no one would be allowed to take pictures!

Cassi Renee said...

The last museum I visited (Science & Engineering in Chicago) had some fascinating exhibits, but that was before surgery, so I was too distracted by pain to enjoy it. However the point was for Emma to enjoy it, and she did. One exhibit from that visit that stands out was a 3-D flat screen TV. It was fascinating, although I don't feel any need to have it in my home.

That photo you took of the dinosaurs, with the kids drawing --that just looks like the best day. Just getting to sit around huge dino skeletons and sketch. (Jane, by the way, was discovered by the Natural History museum of the city I teach in. We went to see her when she was here.)

I do not get how the hanging piano fit into the Hall of Architecture, but given that the Hall of Sculptures was minus sculptures, maybe this museum has some organizational method I don't get :-)

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Wow, it's been ages since I last visited a museum. I guess it would have been in June in Concord. That's some space!
I'd want to hear a concert in a space like that, strings.

Patience_Crabstick said...

What a very nice day out for Einstein!

I love museums and I can think of many that I love. One in particular that stands out is the Museum of Decorative Arts in Lisbon, Portugal: An entire 18th century palace devoted to interior decorating with a bit of fashion as well.

Cheri @ Blog This Mom!® said...

Awesome. I LOVE Einstein. And I love museums too. Mmmm. Dinner in the sculpture room? Because I'm hungry right now. :-) I can't even decide what museum is my favorite, but I guess if I could be teleported right this minute, I'd go to the Musée d'Orsay in Paris. I'm fond of the Impressionists and also there's a delicious brasserie just outside. :-)

The Crislers said...

I love the second-story sculptures, but as to what I would do with all that space... I'm not sure. Maybe get those four-wheeled roller scooters I used to sit on in P.E. (the only day I liked P.E.) and scoot, scoot, scoot around the hall.