Sunday, August 5, 2018

City Views, Country Dreams

Good afternoon from a very hot and humid New York City.

Yes, for a variety of reasons, it has been a while since my last post.  During hot days like this Sunday, even neighborhood shady spots like Verdi Square provide no refuge from the heat.

Last Sunday's weather was much milder, and a friend and I ventured up to the tip of Manhattan to visit the Cloisters, where The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Medieval collections are housed.  This summer the Cloisters is one of the sites of an exhibition called, "Heavenly Bodies, Fashion and the Catholic Imagination."  The rest of this exhibit is located within the Met's main Fifth Avenue location.  If you click on the above name of the exhibition you will be linked to the Met's web site.

The Cloisters is a much friendlier setting for this exhibit than the  Fifth Avenue building. In my humble opinion.  The above dresses are Chanel designs.

I liked the way in which the dark arch silhouttes of the black cape's design mimicked the arches of this courtyard.  I believe that the cape was by Balenciaga, but might be incorrect.  (I forgot to take any notes.)

The above wedding gown is a bit spooky but still rather beautiful.  I played around with the reflections in the photo below, blending the architecture with the garments.

This grey gown has quite a dramatic accent.

The next two pictures show an elegantly gowned mannequin who might be a sleeping beauty.

Or she could be an elegant magicians assistant, floating in her Plexiglas box.  Lots of children were viewing the show and were fascinated by this display...lots of tiny fingerprints on the Plexiglas!

The golden silk embroidery on the next gown was extraordinary.

I am going to share a series of photos with you all to give you an idea of how some of the exhibition's staging was done.  In one passageway room, a sort of orchard had been installed and the trees alternating with mannequins wearing garments featuring fabric inspired by Hieronymus Bosch.

The trees and mannequins were planted in gravel filled raised beds.

It was quite dramatic, and also allowed viewers to have good, close up views.  Do note the shoes.

To refresh the palate, here's a more dignified gown.

One of the joys of visiting the Cloisters on a lovely summer's day, is to enjoy walking around its garden spaces.  I was delighted to spy these pomegranates.  I had never before seen these fruits growing, and now have a much better understanding of how they have inspired so many artists over the centuries.

In this same garden I saw many fruits, veg and herbs that were appropriate to the Medieval period.

Although many folks were also visiting the Cloisters last Sunday, the place still maintained a certain welcome tranquility.

The following photo, taken from the walled western edge of the herb garden shows just how close we were to the Hudson River.  In the distance one can see the New Jersey border.

The Cloisters is actually set at the top of Fort Tryon Park.

The lady in the above photo was clever to wear a sun dress for her visit.  I saved the following photo for last.  This single mannequin shared this room with the Met's famed Unicorn Tapestries.  Quite a pairing.

If any of you all will be in the NYC area between now and October 8, I do recommend traveling up to the Cloisters.

Meanwhile, having returned to my own weekly routines, I try to find cooler parts of the day to take some neighborhood walks, and to find the shady side of the street.

There have been a number of recent days and evenings in which we had multiple storms.  Some of the clouds have been quite dramatic.

This summer's farmers market produce has been delicious.  I have taken lots of photos before dining upon these gems.

This final photo is of a colored pencil sketch I made to honor some truly delicious ripe peaches before they disappeared.

I thank you all for your visits and comments, and also for your patience with my long disappearances.  I cannot predict when I might manage to post another blog, but please do know that I have not given up on blogging.  Meanwhile, if you wish to visit my Instagram page, please do click on the pink link.

Happy Summer!