Today did not go according to plan, but it was wonderful anyway. Today was the day to take the rental car back, so we headed into Ottawa early-ish to do that. No problems with the return, they took the amount of money they said they would and we headed out on foot. We meandered through the downtown area on our way to the National Art Gallery, stopping at a few odd monuments. Some kind of soldier thing for peacekeepers... la la la.
And then the art gallery! The Van Gogh exhibit! Avery learned about van Gogh in school this year and created some of her own paintings based on his work. She was excited to see the real paintings. Of course, you can't take any pictures inside the gallery...
... so here are some outside pictures! The gallery is itself a work of art.
In the van Gogh gallery, the two paintings that Avery studied were not included: Starry night and Twelve Sunflowers in a vase. That was a bit disappointing, but we did find some new favourites. I found a few images of paintings that stood out for us.
Brilliant detail. I don't think a print of these paintings could ever capture the texture. Trees and Undergrowth is amazing with it's play of light and shadow.
The subtle shading of the background, the obvious Japanese influence- Almond Branch stood out as something very different from the other paintings in the exhibit.
A still life of Boots? Somehow they become friendly and extraordinary in this painting!
What I didn't know before is how funny van Gogh paintings look up close. The brush strokes are thick and chunky and it is not until you stand back a few paces does the image come together. It amazed me that he could create up close an image that was optimal from a distance. I want to know more about this man! We will go to the Museum of Civilization where they are showing an iMax movie about van Gogh later in the week.
We then went through more (although not all!!!!) of the gallery. There was a collection of paintings by Canadian artists that I really enjoyed. We got to see paintings by Emily Carr, the Group of 7, Alex Janvier. Loved them all!!!!!
We also went through the modern art area. Some things were brilliant, and some things were horrid! I rather think an artist has to be very cheeky and full of themselves if they can command a whole exhibit room with a piece called 'Gravity and Levity' and all it contained were two medium sized rocks and a pile of carpet underlay trimmings! If everything is art... then nothing is art! (Just my opinion, mind you. Remember that I spent $50 to go and look at all this stuff...) Another piece was weird, but fun. The artist had enough sewing machine tables (the kind with a hole cut in the middle for the machine) to fill a room. The tables were covered with a hardwood laminate top, and they were all laid together to create the look of a hole-filled raised floor. Gym markings and basketball nets were added and voila! A strange basketball court was created.
We were all fascinated with a movie called 'The Clock'. It plays for 24 hours, and is all kinds of movie clips from any era or genre stitched together with references to time as it's only common thread. Bizarre, but interesting! The movie played in real time (of sorts), every minute was mentioned or seen on a clock.
The original plan was to also tour the mint, but we stayed way too long at the gallery. So we made our way to the bus stop to figure out the bus route home. That went without a hitch, and Francois was a bit dumbfounded that we made it to the suburbs without a car. Although if someone were visiting in Edmonton and planned to get around by bus to Spruce Grove I would think them funny too!