Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A day at the art museum

Over the weekend, my mother-in-law and Milwaukee Art Museum member pass holder, picked me up and let me tag along to the "Impressionism: Masterworks on Paper" and "Taryn Simon: Photographs and Texts". What better than Van Gogh, Seurat, Cezanne, french countrysides, swirling water colors, and some airport contraband. Wait, what?

It was a little mind boggling for me, too. One minute I was looking at beautiful, priceless, rare paintings and the next, a photo series called the "Innocents" by photographer Taryn Simon--complex, layered portraits of falsely accused men standing where the crime they were convicted for originally took place. In the dimly lit hotel room or the thick camouflage of a forest, their faces were obscured, their expressions conflicted and confused. All of the men were mistakingly identified as the perpetrator by a convinced eye witness. It was haunting. Taryn's next piece called "Contraband" catalogues 1,075 seized items from one JFK terminal over 5 days. Items include the bizarre, like a dead hawk, counterfeit medicine, homemade moonshine to the accidental like someone's lunch, sausage from germany, fake disney toys and even someone's immigration paperwork accidentally seized.

We had lunch at the Cafe Calatrava, which by the way, you don't need to purchase admission to enter. The menu is all french inspired because of the impressionism exhibit. The menu rotates seasonally and takes inspiration from featured exhibits (Just glad Taryn Simon's mystery meat wasn't on the menu). I would recommend the tomato-basil bisque and a glass of the Nederberg from Lyric, South Africa. So good.

In the gift shop, I found a Sabre acrylic serving set! I've been looking for these fancy looking Paris made acrylic serving spoons and sets by Sabre for-ev-er. I saw them on a blog almost a year ago and realized they're sold out like everywhere. So, if you like, head to the museum gift shop, asap.

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