Friday, August 11, 2006

Gallery Hopping: The Refreshment List...

I was musing about art galleries the other day and was thinking how, with all the various art galleries at my disposal when I was living up in New York, my favorite thing to do was to go visit The Met.

Back when SoHo was the hot art gallery place back in the 80s (and early 90s...?) I used to go there often to look at all of them, one after the other, and that was fun ... but ... then they disappeared ... and for a time I kinda disappeared from creating art, too ...

When I got my art-head back on after 2000, frequent visits to The Met helped clear my thoughts of the cobwebs. I got into the habit of taking a brisk walk through the galleries and having a coffee or juice in their cafe space on the first floor afterwards. I really felt renewed when I did that.

I have to admit the other fancy uptown art galleries never interested me much, if only because they seemed "packaged" for the person who wanted to have a piece to go with their couch and vase. Not that there's anything wrong with that. It's just a different atmosphere -- and frankly one that's somewhat intimidating for someone who doesn't live that lifestyle. I didn't want to "intrude" to "just look".

And when the new art galleries reappeared in Chelsea, I started to discover those. But I didn't get acquainted quickly enough to visit them with any regularity before I moved here. So The Met it was. Good, affordable and favorite art standby.

My recent reminiscing made me realize I somewhat equate galleries with refreshments, because I literally am refreshed when I visit them.

The Met was sweet. It was my glass of water.

I visit art galleries when I need new input: an infusion of new sight, a peek at new thoughts. I want to know what other artists are thinking and want to see that out loud on their canvases. I know it's been an especially great visit when I leave and am happy to be part of the art community and just feel good. The work may spur me to want to be creative, or it may move me to want to be very quiet and just learn something ... Sometimes I just need a rest and need to look at something new.

I want to be refreshed by art galleries.

Refreshments are necessary, since drinking helps the body ... but part of the fun is also their variety, and the why one enjoys them ... I even made a list. For example:

Water is the old and best standby. It may come off plain, but we need it to live, and it can't be beat when you're parched.

Lemonade is sunny, tart and if you had to call a drink literally "refreshment", I would call lemonade that. I would drink this all year round if I could find it at the supermarket. (ie., anything with High Fructose Corn Syrup in it isn't Lemonade!)

Coffee is a working drink. I enjoy it as I draw, write, blog, paint. It sharpens the mind and revs everything up so it all gets done ... all 2, 3, 4 cups of it ...

Cranberry Juice (with a slice of lime!) is a drink of leisure, relaxation ... I associate this with lunches that are not rushed ... and lunches where we have discussions ... it's thoughtful and great company.

Wine is the drink of friendship and celebration. Of course we would serve this at an art opening! A new show with new ideas is a wonderful thing and must be celebrated!

I don't drink Sweet (or Unsweet) Tea enough to count, so that one's off the chart.

And that's my refreshment list.

So now what would I call each local art gallery if I compared them to one of my favorite refreshments ... ?

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