Art Lovers discussion

Artistic Travel and Destinations

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message 1: by Heather, Moderator (new)

Heather | 8092 comments As a suggestion from Monica, this topic is where we can discuss and share our desires to see and/or our experiences with seeing and touring various places in the world that would offer further light and knowledge of the arts.

For example, the last topic discussed in the Art Lovers News Corner was one of Frederick Church's Olana on the Hudson. This subject was initiated by Monica and further commented on by Susanna.

Feel free to continue the conversation and share with us your interests!

message 2: by Becca-Rawr (new)

Becca-Rawr (the_bec) I have to say that I actually drive past this place every single day to go to classes at my college and I NEVER knew what it was. Wow... I feel so stupid, lol But at least I know I can pop over there whenever I want and have a look see! (There's nothing like knowing you've grown up around a major art structure.)

message 3: by Carol (new)

Carol (goodreadscomcarolann) | 1140 comments I have wanted to see it for many years now. My husband & I hope to see it this fall -- for our "fall foliage trip."

message 4: by Jim (last edited Mar 04, 2010 06:58AM) (new)

Jim | 147 comments I lived in Philadelphia in the early 70s and enjoyed going to The Barnes Foundation which had a great collection of Impressionistic paintings as well as tremendous African Art.
It was in a suburb along the Main Line and in a mansion
I don't know if the collection's moved to some other site in Philly yet, but if it hasn't it's a unique place to see a tremendous collection

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments If you're in the Winston-Salem, North Carolina, area, Reynolda House is worth a visit. It was built by the founder of the Reynolds tobacco company, and opened as an art museum in the 1960s. Their specialty in collecting is American artists.

Their current exhibitions are on the "American Expatriates" (Cassatt, Whistler, Sargent) and the photographer William Christenberry.

message 6: by Monica (last edited Mar 11, 2010 09:19PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Rebecca you must go visit Olana. Tell us what you think!

message 7: by Jonathan (last edited Mar 05, 2010 10:22PM) (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments Olana is beautiful. I don't know if you caught Robert Hughes's TV series "American Visions" about 10 or 12 years ago, but he did a terrific segment at Olana that really captured the spirit of the place (although you should still go in person).

If you're doing a leaf-peeping tour of the Hudson valley this autumn, another nice art-related destination is the Hyde Collection in Glens Falls, which is about an hour--maybe less than that--directly north of Olana. The Hyde is a truly lovely museum in a castle-like mansion built on a hillside overlooking the river. In the distance, you can see the paper mill once owned by the family of the museum's founder, Charlotte Hyde. The collection is especially rich in 19th and early 20th century American art, but there are also some outstanding European pieces as well, including a Rembrandt "Head of Christ."

Here's the link for the Hyde's website:

If you go, there's a nice old hotel in town called the Queensbury Inn.

message 8: by Carol (new)

Carol (goodreadscomcarolann) | 1140 comments Jonathan wrote: "Olana is beautiful. I don't know if you caught Robert Hughes's TV series "American Visions" about 10 or 12 years ago, but he did a terrific segment at Olana that really captured the spirit of the p..."

Thank you Jonathan. It's always best to get recommendations!

message 9: by Monica (last edited Mar 11, 2010 09:36PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Hi Jonathan, Carol, and all you art lovers like me!

I begged my way into the first floor of Olana because it was closed the day I got there. Gave my 'I live in Michigan' sob story!

Thanks for your comment Carol, I almost forgot to add American Visions to my Netflix queue. I hope they have it!!!

There's also Hyde Park, The Vanderbilt Mansion all the related Roosevelt sites.

Which reminds me of this AWESOME site I found a couple years ago. ENJOY!

message 10: by Dvora (new)

Dvora I visited Hyde Park maybe thirty years ago after having read Franklin and Eleanor by Joseph Lash. I was very taken with Eleanor. So the audio self-guided tour, being narrated by Eleanor herself, made a huge impression on me (which is why I can still remember it so many years later). It was as if she was personally greeting me and being hostess.

Monica wrote: "Hi Jonathan, Carol, and all you art lovers like me!

I begged my way into the first floor of Olana because it was closed the day I got there. Gave my 'I live in Michigan' sob story!

Thanks for yo..."

message 11: by Monica (last edited Apr 08, 2010 02:22PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Really cool, Dvora. Hyde Park was under renovation, or nearly completely renovated when I was there in the 80s. I'd forgotten but I listened to the same audio tour.

The Roosevelt home in Campobello, Maine.
FDR site with audio and extensive photo galleries...


message 12: by Heather, Moderator (last edited Mar 09, 2010 08:25AM) (new)

Heather | 8092 comments What about the Biltmore Estate? "Filled with the art treasures Mr. Vanderbilt collected throughout his world travels, the mansion is a museum in itself". It is located in Ashville, North Carolina. I've been there about 5-6 times when I lived in Knoxville, TN (about a one hour drive). What a beautiful place with its landscaping, wine press, and of course, the mansion itself!

message 13: by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (last edited Mar 09, 2010 10:40AM) (new)

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments Neat place to visit - I live about an hour from Asheville, and my knitting group go up there periodically to visit it and other fun places. We most recently went there about a year ago.

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments I can also recommend the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, Georgia. It opened in the house of Mrs. High on Peachtree St. in 1926, and now is in a building of over 300,000 square feet. The permanent collection is over 11,000 pieces.

Current and upcoming exhibitions include displays on South African art, modern portraiture, "the allure of the automobile," Titian, Dali, and the photography of Henri Cartier-Bresson.

message 15: by Jonathan (last edited Mar 09, 2010 12:04PM) (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments Susanna wrote: "Neat place to visit - I live about an hour from Asheville..."

Hi Susanna,

The High Museum really is terrific: I visited about two years ago and was totally blown away.

Since you're close to Asheville, I'm curious if you've ever been to Greeneville, SC--not too far from you, is it?--to see the Museum and Gallery at Bob Jones Univ. I know that many people have strong feelings about the University itself (both for and against), but the collection appears to be truly outstanding by absolutely any standard, especially in the Baroque period. I've never been, but would like to visit sometime.

message 16: by Carol (new)

Carol (goodreadscomcarolann) | 1140 comments I agree the High Museum is great!

On the same day,we also took the kids (they were young then) to the Fernbank Museum of Natural History (about a 10 minute ride). Fossils, interactive things to do, plus IMAX.

message 17: by Carol (new)

Carol (goodreadscomcarolann) | 1140 comments Don't know if anyone has been to Baltimore but I went there a few years ago for 3 days with a group of docents. We had the best time. We went to the Walter's Museum and the Baltimore Museum of Art. No admission fees in Baltimore -- it's free. So much to see, great food on the bay.

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments Jonathan - I live in Greenville, S.C.!

Bob Jones' art museum is interesting, and worth a visit. Their best piece, to my mind, is a Rembrandt.

Also worth a visit in Greenville: the Greenville County Museum of Art. Their special focus is southern art. They also have a large collection of works by Andrew Wyeth.

message 19: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments Susanna wrote: "I live in Greenville, S.C.!"

Oh gosh, what a funny coincidence!

The Rembrandt at BJU does look to be very fine. It's actually one of the main reasons that I want to visit, as I have an especially strong interest in Dutch art of that period.

And thanks very much for the tip about the Greenville Museum. I love Andrew Wyeth's work. I guess it was just about this time last year that I wrote an obituary on him for Art & Antiques. The news of his death broke just before the issue went to press, so the piece is quite brief:

message 20: by Monica (last edited Mar 11, 2010 12:05PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Well done Jonathan.

How about the Philips Collection? Amal will start saving for her passage to this continent and Heather will undoubtedly add this to her next east coast agenda.


I love stuff like this who's who:

message 21: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 1840 comments One of my favorite places to visit is the Isabella Stuart Gardiner Museum in Boston. Just imagine you had an eccentric aunt with half of the money in the world who liked to collect art willynilly.

message 22: by Monica (last edited Mar 11, 2010 04:07PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Before we get too far away from Jonathan's piece about Andrew Wyeth. I want to suggest this destination though I've never been there and chances are I never will!
[image error]

It looks like Frederick Law Olmsted's home should be reopening this year.

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments For those visiting the Charlotte area, a trip to the Mint Museum might be in order. It now has two branches: the "Mint Museum Randolph," which is in the home of the former U.S. Mint (active from 1836 to the Civil War), and the Mint Museum of Craft + Design, which is on S. Tryon Street in "Uptown" Charlotte. (Golly do I hate that term. So does my father, who lives there, and calls it Upchuck Charlotte.) It will open in October 2010, and is currently in the process of moving.

Current and upcoming displays include 20th Century Haute Couture, "The Golden Age of English Art" (18th century), North Carolina pottery, and Native American basketry.

I spent my early childhood in Charlotte, and took my first art/art appreciation classes at the Mint, and think of it fondly.

message 24: by Jim (new)

Jim | 147 comments Heather wrote: "What about the Biltmore Estate? "Filled with the art treasures Mr. Vanderbilt collected throughout his world travels, the mansion is a museum in itself". It is located in Ashville, North Carolina. ..."

THE FIRST TYCOON by T.J. Stiles about Vanderbilt is a great read.
Vanderbilt initially was a boat boy and worked his way up in the business of transporting passengers from Staten Island to Manhatten. He was a shrewd businessman and more than anything competiitve plus he had no problem getting his hands dirty.

He had almost no schooling.
I haven't reached the part about his building the Biltmore or his art collecting yet.

The book is a really inclusive look at the development of America from after the American Revolution to after the Civil War with the focus on how big a part of the nation's financial development Vanderbilt was.

message 25: by Monica (new)

Monica | 909 comments For Matisse & Chagall lovers: Union Church, Pocantico Hills, NY.

message 26: by Jonathan (last edited Mar 11, 2010 02:36PM) (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments Susanna, when you mentioned the Mint Museum, I immediately started thinking of the herb (as in mint julep). I really have to get myself down to that area. I'm supposed to go to Charleston in May, but that's pretty far to the east of Charlotte, Asheville, Greenville, etc.

Monica, if you're in the area of Pocantico Hills, the main buildings of Kykuit, the Rockefeller family's estate, are open to the public. Although the Rockefellers were (and still are) significant art collectors--they helped found the Museum of Modern Art in New York, among other institutions--the main attractions at Kykuit are really the grounds and buildings. Especially interesting to me: sometime in the late 60s, Gov. Nelson Rockefeller decided he wanted a less formal place to hang out while at the estate--most of the rooms are quite elaborate and traditionally decorated--so he built a "rec room" in the basement, complete with shag carpeting, "mod" furniture made out of bent chrome tubing, and what we would once have called "groovy" pictures (including an Andy Warhol portrait of Mrs. R). If you happened to grow up during that era, you'll find it pretty amusing:

message 27: by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (last edited Mar 11, 2010 03:26PM) (new)

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments If you're headed to Charleston, you might try the Gibbes Museum. It's on Meeting St. Current and future exhibitions include "The Charleston Story," the travel art of James McNeill Whistler, and "Modern Masters from the Ferguson Collection" (seems to include works by Picasso, Rodin, de Kooning, and Rauschenberg). They also sponsor things like walking tours of Charleston.

message 28: by Monica (last edited Mar 11, 2010 04:00PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments The Kykuit grounds are nice. I'm a gardener. The view (their land?) goes straight to the Hudson, so no houses block the vista. I grew up near there. The Rockefellers were able to designate their land as agricultural to significantly reduce their taxes while the rest of the population paid proportionately a lot more. That was many decades ago. I'm fairly certain the property taxes are substantial but the Rockefellers may still live partime on the farm!

The combination of classical and modern furnishings upstairs were lovely, the basement, a sign of the times, only with their budget. Most of us were running around in the woods!

That said, I appreciate what the Rockefellers have given NY and the world. At some obscure place in Italy an arch or painting I noticed was restored by the Rockefellers.

The Unicorn Tapestries and entire Cloisters complex were a wonderful gift. [image error]

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments The Cloisters are fabulous and well worth a visit.

message 30: by Jonathan (last edited Mar 11, 2010 05:59PM) (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments Thanks for the tip on the Gibbes Museum, Susanna. I'll be sure to check it out when I'm in Charleston.

Monica, you're so right about the Cloisters--a beautiful place. But I have to confess that I haven't been up there in a very long time, even though it's just 30 minutes away from me by subway. I'll have to make a trip there soon...

message 31: by Monica (new)

Monica | 909 comments I'll be there on Easter.

message 32: by Monica (last edited Mar 11, 2010 10:09PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments If you're wandering around Irvington NY

message 33: by Monica (last edited Apr 11, 2010 02:55PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments When in Rome do as the Romans do.

message 34: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments Hi Monica, The Cloisters would be a perfect spot for Easter. Hope you enjoy. BTW, what is that unusual building in Irvington? Is it a home? Don't think I've ever seen anything quite like it...

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments Is that the Octagon House?

message 36: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments The Octagon House? Sounds like the setting for a Dan Brown story...

message 37: by Monica (last edited Mar 12, 2010 12:49PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Sorry, to take some time responding but I've been trying unsuccessfully to figure out how to reduce the image size of the pictures I post...

Jonathan & Susanna, yes, it's called the Octagon house. Yes, it's a home but people traipse over there all the time. Sorry I can't give you directions but any one there can point you to it. It's off Rte. 9A like lots of other treasures.

The Cloisters will be lovely butfirst my friends and I will be taking my 80 year old aunt to the World Peace Prayer Meeting at the SGI-USA community center in Manhattan!


message 38: by Heather, Moderator (new)

Heather | 8092 comments Historic Artists' Homes and Studios is a consortium of 30 of America's most significant artists' spaces that are open to the public and serve over 600,000 visitors each year. These extraordinary sites are the intimate living and work spaces of painters, sculptors, ceramicists, photographers, and furniture designers. They include superb collections and intact studios, landscapes, and homes dating as far back as the 17th century. Here, visitors may see original palettes and brushes, study plaster casts and tools, and look out of the artists’ windows to partake of the views that inspired them.

Choose by state or region — or view the entire list

message 39: by Monica (new)

Monica | 909 comments The National Trust for Historic Preservation is a wonderful organization! Thanks again, Heather. You're a star!

message 40: by Carol (new)

Carol (goodreadscomcarolann) | 1140 comments April in Boston means the first glimpses of spring & time to visit one of my favorite places -- the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. Check out the beautiful hanging Nasturtiums in the courtyard, a tradition that began by Isabella Stewart Gardner herself.

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message 41: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 1840 comments I adore the ISGM. What a spot.

message 42: by Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (last edited Apr 08, 2010 01:33PM) (new)

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 112 comments I have always wanted to visit that museum (it's at the top of my unvisited US art museums, with the Art Institute of Chicago and the Getty villa), and those nasturtiums! Wowza.

message 43: by Monica (last edited Apr 08, 2010 01:55PM) (new)

Monica | 909 comments Wowza is right! How do they do that? I forget if the atrium has been covered, anyone remember?

I think goodreads is having difficulty posting pics. 2 of Carol's aren't showing either.

message 44: by Monica (new)

Monica | 909 comments If you click on "edit post" then "preview" the images may still be there. Many of the images I posted were "missing." I re-posted and now the images are back.

message 45: by Heather, Moderator (new)

Heather | 8092 comments Those courtyards are incredible! I would love to just sit on a bench, smell the flowers and read a good book. What relaxation!

message 46: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 1840 comments Yes, the atrium is covered, Monica. Beautiful glass ceiling way, way up.

message 47: by Monica (new)

Monica | 909 comments Back on the poetry thread I just found the poem about Luca Signorelli's paintings.

[image error]
Orvieto :-)
Talk about artistic destinations!

message 48: by Jonathan (last edited Apr 13, 2010 01:54PM) (new)

Jonathan Lopez | 257 comments The historic houses of Newport, Rhode Island, can make for a nice summer excursion, as can the town of Newport, which is quite nice. You can buy a combined entry pass for ten of the big Gilded Age mansions, including the Breakers, the Elms, Rosecliff, the Marble House, etc.

The Marble House, one of the Vanderbilt family's homes, will be hosting a special exhibition this summer of the entire collection of paintings, sculptures, and decorative art objects around which the house's Gothic Room was designed. This will be the first time that the Gothic Room's complete contents will be shown on site in more than 80 years. (Most of these objects were sold off in the mid-1920s.) An article about the exhibition is available as a Pdf here:

The Elms:

The Marble House:

message 49: by Ruth (new)

Ruth | 1840 comments Isn't it amazing to think that people lived like that.

message 50: by Monica (new)

Monica | 909 comments The mansions are all museums now. Thanks to the Preservation Society for keeping them. There are still extremely knowledgeable docents as I was blessed to have a gentleman who is a fifth or sixth generation Rhode Islander as a guide at Kingscote last summer.

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