Monday, November 26, 2007
Frida and the Birds
On Saturday, the Dude and I visited the Walker Art Center to see the Frida Kahlo exhibit – along with everyone else in the Upper Midwest. It was his first time ever at the Walker and my first time in about 10 years. I used to visit the Walker all the time – was even a member for a year or two – when I lived nearby and could walk over.
The kids and I visit the Minneapolis Institute of Arts frequently (several times a year maybe), and always spend lots of time enjoying the collection. Our experience at the Walker was not as much fun. The collection on display seemed rather limited compared to the MIA, and we moved pretty quickly past most of the work. For his part, the Dude was impressed with some of the pieces – even commenting that one looked like the artist had made it the “Creation Station” – the corner of his classroom where everyone brings cast-off objects from home that they then assemble for art projects.
The highlight was the Frida Kahlo display. I won’t tell you how long we waited in line to be admitted to this display – OK – we waited almost one hour – but the Dude was very patient, amazingly so. The Kahlo exhibit was housed in several rooms that held between 250 and 275 people. Entrance and exits were monitored closely and people were let in when others exited. It was crowded, but I had the best tour guide in the house.
The Dude’s Spanish teacher is very interested in Kahlo – obsessed might be the right word to use. The kids have learned all about her life, her work, her marriage to Diego Rivera, etc. The Dude recognized several paintings, telling me the story behind the picture, the symbolism involved, and in what stage of her life/career the painting was created. It was pretty amazing.
All-in-all it was a good trip. One of the highlights was seeing the Spoonbridge and Cherry sculpture. The Dude had never seen it “live” before – but knew it was “famous, because I’ve seen it in books and calendars”.
We also got to combine art with birding. There was a Red-Tailed Hawk working the sculpture garden and later the grassy median of Hennepin Avenue between the Walker and St. Marks. Quite amazing really given the highly urban landscape – and the Dude loved it – given his recent obsession with Raptors.