day ten: museum

January 10, 2017 @ 4:52 pm | Filed under:


textile and shadows

Five of us went to Balboa Park this morning. It was Free Tuesday and yet we actually got parking! We don’t usually get out of the house early enough. Huck, Rilla, and I spent most of our time in the Museum of Man while Rose and Beanie roamed the Park. I need to go back soon (very possibly this weekend, with a visiting friend) to spend some time in the Scandinavian textiles exhibit in the Mingei. I got the barest peek—a breathtaking piece in the foyer—and am champing at the bit to return. (Sans seven-year-old. I love the kid, but long periods of thoughtful gazing at large pieces of cloth isn’t exactly his specialty. Besides his own shadow, the thing he found most interesting in the Mingei was that wall outlet. He’ll be forever haunted by the mystery of why the lower half is sealed over.)

(Ouch. Just realized that even if he were as fascinated with textiles as I am, I’d only have three days to go back with a seven-year-old. He’ll be eight on Friday.)


Detail from “Pythagorus” drapery fabric by Sven Markelius

Back in the ’90s when I decided the thing missing from our little Queens apartment was a table loom (ahahaha), I quickly discovered that the weaving patterns that appealed to me most were the Scandinavian ones. My Carl Larsson obsession began about that same time. Although, as I mentioned the other day, I have finally grasped reality enough to part with one or two of my old weaving texts, none of the Swedish books were ever in danger. I love flipping through them, even though the loom’s been in the garage for ten years. The clean lines and simple, bright geometric patterns fill me with such satisfaction.

The Erik Gronborg exhibit is also breathtaking and begs a good deal more of my time.

(None of my pictures came out, sorry. My phone didn’t like the lighting. Plus I had a seven-year-old to watch.)

The Monsters exhibit at the Museum of Man was much more Huck’s cup of tea. 🙂


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3 Reponses | Comments Feed
  1. Melanie Bettinelli says:

    Ooooh I love looking at large pieces of fabric. I have dragged my seven year old boy through a lot of museum exhibits and I notice he’s less resistant to some of them than he used to be. But he definitely prefers exhibits of samurai armor to quilts.

    And also I don’t think Huck should be allowed to be 8 yet.

  2. Susanne Barrett says:

    Balboa Park has long been one of my favorite places ever. My great-great-(great?)grandfather designed one of the buildings for the 1915 Exposition; it used to be where the Japanese Friendship Garden is now. The Quayle Brothers also designed the North Park Theater and the North Park Elks Lodge, the old Balboa Stadium (where the Chargers played their first season after coming down from LA), the old downtown police station (torn down and replaced), and many homes in Golden Hill, North Park, and Mission Hills.

    My favorite place is the Timken (a free art gallery is always a welcome place!). I’ve known most of those paintings since childhood, so stopping by for a visit is much like dropping in on old friends. The SDMA is a close second; I can always lose myself in art museums, and one of my favorite paintings is there; I have a print on my wall: The Young Shepherdess by William Adolphe Bouguereau. I just love the look in her eyes, as if she’s spinning castles in the air while walking the hard paths, barefoot.

    I’ll have to sneak down to the Mingei; that textile exhibit sounds lovely!

    Susanne 🙂

  3. Stephanie says:

    Oh my gosh, what a beautiful exhibition! Last year I so so luckily got to visit Carl & Karin Larsson’s house in Sweden. It was a pilgrimage. The tour through the house was in Swedish – I would love to know what the guide said! The house and paintings were as lovely as I expected. What blew me away was the beauty of Karin’s textiles. Karin was an artist too but is maybe not as recognised as she should be. Her designs were steeped in traditional patterns but innovative and modern. So beautiful.