I started early on my New Year’s resolution this year. It was about time I started making more time for me. Doing things that I enjoy; travel, food, day plans, even if it means enjoying an experience solo. I must say, it’s been working pretty well and my new found freedom has allowed me to try new things and see another side of myself.
Last week I ventured out to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. A place that I had neglected for a couple years but recently rediscovered and desperately wanted to go back. I’m not a huge museum person, especially when I travel. Don’t get me wrong, there are some absolutely incredible museums that have taken my breath away (Musee de l’Orangerie in Paris and the Accademia Gallery in Florence) but I would rather be out experiencing the natural buzz, indulging in cultural foods, or touring the city, than wandering around a museum all day.
With almost every type of art, the MFA is amazing to get lost in. If you have niche, like I do, it’s a great place to see what you’re interested in but also to discover some new stuff as well. I’m a lover of Modern Art and Impressionism, so right when I got there I shot straight up to the Monet exhibit. It’s probably the closest thing I can find in the US to the Musee de l’Orangerie in Paris, where the walls are covered from floor to ceiling with Water Lilies. Boston actually has one of the largest Monet collections outside of France. The MFA has about 20-30 different Monet pieces, and a handful of them are displayed. My favorites, as you could have guessed, were his Water Lilies. But also included is La Japonaise (1876) and some other early works from the 1870’s.
The room was clear of large tour groups, so I had the pleasure of sitting quietly and enjoying each piece. From a far I gazed and studied the detail up close of his mesmerizing brush strokes. After 45 minutes I migrated to the Contemporary Art section, which I personally adore.I love seeing what artists can create with non-traditional mediums and I was gitty with excitement when I stumbled upon Jason Middlebrook’s “Landscape Abstracted,” a huge 24 by 80 feet acrylic abstract geometric contemporary painting. It was spectacular to look at, as my eyes were rolling over one brilliantly colored peak to the next. I was in heaven, snapping away at different angles and trying to capture the entire essence of the piece. (I ended up sneaking into the restaurant, Bravo, on the opposite side of the display.)
After I had to pull myself away from the Contemporary section and the special exhibition “UH-OH” by Frances Stark, I quickly passed through the etchings, drawings, and photography. (Something I will need to come back and actually appreciate.) I hurried up to the Making Modern exhibits, because now I only had about another hour before closing. This is one of the sparser genres I’d say, showcasing 28 artists including Georgia O’Keefe, Jackson Pollock, Freda Kahlo, and Picasso.
The MFA is a great place to spend the day and I definitely didn’t give myself enough time there. You can meander at your own pace, relax in the stunning courtyard, and check out their current exhibits, like William Merritt Chase. So don’t forget that it’s there, like I did for so long!