Pictures and windows

Today turned out rather cold and dull, so it was not such a problem that our ‘couple of hours’ in the Art Institute turned into rather more than a couple of hours. A great place. I had not realised just how many famous paintings they have. (A bit annoying to have to pay quite substantially to see them though, when any American can just walk into our National Gallery free of charge!)

We focused, as one has to in any gallery of this size, and actually tracked down each of the 12 ‘must see’ works, as indicated on the plan they give you. This was good, as it took us to parts of the gallery we might have missed, as well as making sure we didn’t try to see everything – always fatal. Interesting that the last one to tick off was down on the lowest floor and there there was a fascinating world of Miniature Rooms – every one built to scale and fashioned/carved by hand to precise plans. They each gave an aspect of American and European furniture and fittings – each of the 68 a tiny world all of its own. Just brilliant!

But I think in the end I think I was most impressed with Marc Chagall’s American Windows. A glorious symphony of colour, light and shape. One could sit mesmerised by it for a long time. I remember seeing the window in Chichester last year and was so pleased to see another example of his work.

I have to add in extras a picture of a group of youngsters who were being inspired to look, and look again, at the Picasso – The Old Guitarist. There were a few such groups of schoolchildren moving around the place, but this lady was an inspiration and had a number of adults (us included) gathered round – learning alongside the kids.

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