Marvelous, Mysterious, Masterpieces…

…from Museums in Washington D.C.

It’s time for the letter M in Jenny’s Alpabe-Thursday.

This is fire etched wood relief called The Adoration of St. Joan of Arc, 1896, J. William Fosdick.  This first series of photos were taken at the National Portrait Gallery.

Sadly I didn’t take photos of all the descriptions of the art and I didn’t have my museum husband or daughter with me who read everything in museums to help me out. OYE!

This was so mysterious and sad. This is a bronze memorial of Henry Adam’s wife “Clover”. She committed suicide in 1885 by drinking chemicals used for processing photographs. Adams commissioned Augustus Saint-Gaudens to create this memorial of his wife.

A most interesting canvas…

Now I’m moving on to the National Gallery of Art…

For my finale I’m posting 2 more Masterpieces from Monet…

I’m going to be traveling out and about being a tour guide for the next few days. I’ll try to visit sometime this weekend.

We were so excited that the U.S. Women beat France on Wednesday to go to the World Cup Finals on Sunday. They will be playing Japan who beat Sweden on Wednesday. Go U.S.A.!

Russian Art in Washington D.C.

Marjorie Merriweather Post (1887-1973), heir to the Post cereal fortune, was the founder of Hillwood Museum and Gardens – her former twenty-five acre estate in Washington, DC. This is one of my favorite works of art that is housed in her former home.

 

This large painting depicts one of the most important social and political events of old Russia, a wedding uniting two families of the powerful boyar class that dominated Muscovite politics in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The artist has singled out that moment during the wedding feast when the guests toast the bridal couple with the traditional chant of “gor’ko, gor’ko,” meaning “bitter, bitter,” a reference to the wine, which has supposedly turned bitter. The newlywed couple must kiss to make the wine sweet again. The toast occurs towards the end of the feast when a roasted swan is brought in, the last dish presented before the couple retires.

For the rest of these photos I zoomed in on the painting above to get more of the detail to share…

 

The sumptuously attired guests at this lavish wedding feast fete the newlyweds in a candlelit dining hall replete with gleaming silver and gold and richly embroidered linens. Konstantin Makovskii painted this work in 1883, two hundred years after such an event would have occurred. The Russian revival style was quite popular at the time, as Russians were nostalgic for the traditions predating Peter the Great’s efforts to westernize the country.

 

Mrs. Post acquired the painting in the 1960’s. It was among her final major acquisitions as she and her curator, Marvin Ross, prepared to open her home as a museum.

 

 

On her death in 1973, Mrs. Post’s final and most important philanthropic gesture became reality when Hillwood, her last estate in Washington, DC, was bequeathed to the public as a museum. Her magnificent French and Russian collections remain on view at Hillwood Museum and Gardens, where her legacy of opulent beauty and gracious elegance continues to thrive.

 

I saw this next painting at the National Portrait Gallery. I was drawn to it again because of it’s Russian origin. The Samovar on the table suggests that it was a tea gathering. My parents and relatives were from the Peasant class so they never dressed up like this or had such a luxurious tea…

 

 

Many times at our Russian wedding receptions in the States the tradition of tapping our tea glasses with silverware to alert the newly wed couple that our tea was not sweet was performed. This was to inform the newlyweds they needed to stand and kiss each other to sweeten our tea.  The Russian receptions that I attended did not serve alcohol so the “tea not being sweet” replaced the “wine is bitter” Chai nye slotky is one phonetic way to pronounce “the tea is not sweet”…

Despite myself I’ve had a productive week so far. I mowed the lawn, got some laundry done, cooked some new dishes, ran errands, payed bills, picked up books at the library, and did some shopping. I’m getting ready to take a few days off to have some fun with a bloggy friend flying into town. The main event we’ll be enjoying is the Sequim Lavender Festival on Friday. Of course you’ll be seeing what we did and where we went because neither of us will be forgetting our cameras…

Have a great Wednesday! I’ll be watching the U.S. Women play France in a World Cup semi-final.

HT: Hillwood Estate Museum & Gardens Tour Guide.

A Look at Abraham Lincoln in D.C.

This post will be loaded with photos so don’t say I didn’t warn you.

I’m joining Jenny for Alphabe-Thursday for the Letter L.

I’m gathering all my photos that I took while I was in D.C. in May of Abraham Lincoln. I’ll start with the less obvious views around D.C. and end with the Lincoln Memorial.

The spot where life ended tragically for our 16th President.

I’m adding humorous quotes from here on out from President Lincoln.

From the National Portrait Gallery…

“Whatever you are, be a good one.”

“He can compress the most words into the smallest ideas better than any man I ever met.”

“When I hear a man preach, I like to see him act as if he were fighting bees.”

“Most people are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

“When you have got an elephant by the hind leg, and he is trying to run away, its best to let him run.”

“You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.”

Hope your summer is swimming along. We are enjoying some happy weather here in the Northwest!

Folk Art ~ We the People…

 

Can you read this? Isn’t it clever? This was in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington D.C.

This was one of my favorite museums to visit in Washington D.C. The truth of the matter, is my favorite museums and places to visit were ones that weren’t over the top noisy and filled with 20 or more school tour groups. Loud, out of control, disrespectful groups especially at Memorials were very disappointing and distracting. I was a school teacher and I do enjoy children but there was nothing in some of their behavior that needed to be enjoyed. This was my least favorite thing about Washington D.C. Thanks for letting me get that off my chest.

Yesterday was a glorious sunny day here in the Seattle area. I pulled a lot of weeds and cleaned up some planters. Today I’ll be mowing the lawn. Hope your day is good…

Photobucket replaced all my photos with blurred out versions and they are holding my photos hostage until I pay them lots of money. I’m slowly going through all my posts and trying to clean them up and replacing some photos. Such a bother.