Saturday, March 19, 2011

Campus visit for a Dolliver

Dolliver Call Me Michelle, signed herself up for today's expedition to Princeton University campus. After all, she pointed out, Michelle O. went here and did just fine, so why not a D? I went to visit the Art Museum on the campus,really, but she was more interested in the ambiance of what she is planning to be her future college campus.

On the way there we passed the supermarket and caught the local high school youth orchestra's fund raiser, with a young cellist giving a spirited rendering of a Bach partita for unaccompanied cello

What with posing under ancient trees,

with Henry Moore in the far distance -- that green metal sculpture, wonderful piece of work.

I insisted on getting that in, since Moore is my homey. Another native of north Yorkshire (along with David Hockney) he's always been a favorite around my life.

There was the requisite visit to the Princeton tigers

which impelled a little boy, seeing her there, to jump up, too

And there was the forsythia newly in bloom

outside the art museum, inside which D. rode in her traveling bag and I respectfully refrained from photography while I basked in wonderful small exhibits of all kinds. This is a hugely well endowed place, with gifts right, left and center from rich alumni, and a changing scene of exhibits. Next up will be Schwitters, and I have to see that, just have to.

Meanwhile I was happily studying Japanese woodblock prints (NJ is rich in these, since there have been Japanese students at Rutgers and other places for ages, with the wealth and the gratitude to make sure a wonderful collection is in place). The best one is at the Voorhees Museum in New Brunswick.

Anyway,in Princeton they have some great Hiroshige prints of Tokyo and environs. Poignant to see these at this moment, but I thought it appropriate to pay my respects by honoring an art tradition.

There were also some great Chinese prints from the early medieval period which look startlingly modern, very abstracted visions of natural objects.

This is the best refreshment in the world, to be surrounded by lovely art which makes you look and think and feel. It's a small museum with an amazing collection from medieval to present day, from every continent.

The campus in which you find the art museum, is enormous, ivy covered buildings all over the place, with gargoyles carved on many of them -- books have been written about the gargoyles -- and curving paths and old trees and a worldclass collection of art around every corner. And today groups of high school kids being hauled around in case they want to apply, I guess. This gave D. the idea that if they could why not a D? okay, so it would be a first, but that's fine.

So she sat at this doorway, figuring it looked like the place you should wait at to arrange to be admitted. Wearing her best spring outfit. I told her she'd better crack the books, not to mention studying her music, if she's going to compete with the high school cellist we saw earlier, to get in here.

After you have an intense exposure to art and buildings, the buildings start to look like art. This one, with the Woodrow Wilson building on the right and the chimneys rising, reminded me a lot of Sheeler's industrial landscapes from the early twentieth century. It's the chimneys that do it.

1 comment:

  1. Terrif' pics as always Liz, not to mention the dialogue.



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