Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Paris

One of the dangers of being in a country where you don't
know the language is that sour cream containers look a lot like
yogurt containers.
I went to the Louvre on Saturday night. All the museums
were open late and for free. It was really nice. So it's
not close to 5 Mets on the inside. Probably not even 2, but
it's still huge. I was lost about half my time in the museum.
The Rembrandt was great, there was a famous El Greco, and
I really appreciated De La Tour for the first time.
There was also this other Spanish painter whose name
I've forgotten. I'll have to go back.
I have no idea why everyone likes the Mona Lisa
so much. I find it totally emotion-less and dull. Not even
particularly well executed. Everyone's a critic I suppose...
It just irks me that that painting gets so much attention
while El Greco and Goya take a back seat.
French art is prominent, as was expected. I didn't
expect Raft of the Medusa to be so powerful, but
it was amazing. I'm generally not too keen on the
romantic stuff, but that is a great painting.
I went to Versailles on Sunday. The palace is gaudy, but
the gardens are splendid. I was thinking, mostly about the
Louvre, but Versailles as well, that it takes very rich people
like Rockefeller to build big museums and libraries, but it
takes a king to build a Louvre. Bill Gates could
build his own private Versailles, but even he couldn't
put together such awesome art in one place. (Hmm...well, maybe
he could...) That's one part of my leanings against
capitalism I've never come to terms with. Many of the great
parks, buildings and works of art have been paid for
by millionaires. If wealth were equal, there would be
no Rockefeller park upstate, or the amazing Carnegie library
system in Pittsburgh to name two worthy examples.
I went to an English used book store today, but
everything was really expensive. It was worth the trip to
hear some English dialogue. The store's called Shakespeare
and Co. Apparently Hemmingway used to hang out there.

2 comments:

  1. Anonymous4:55 PM

    Love your blog, man! Found it by googling "Jonathan Safron Foer". There "Greatness" comes up.
    Isn't J.S.F. amazing?
    Have a great time in Paris!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. "One of the dangers of being in a country where you don't
    know the language is that sour cream containers look a lot like
    yogurt containers. "

    HILARIOUS!!! definitely a quotable.

    ReplyDelete