Sunday night. Tall buildings outside my window. Sirens, chatter, horns. Restaurants abound. So much art: performing, visual, music, literature…it’s New York City…and it’s so lovely to be here. I am sitting in my cozy (meaning tiny and warm) hotel room, preparing to watch PBS Sunday night shows (Midwives, Grantchester, etc. Exactly what I would be doing at home in Albuquerque.
I have an excellent excuse. I am exhausted. Attending Broadway shows is hard hard work. One walks far, stands in long lines, puts on the mask, shows the vaccination/id proof, finds seat, climbs stairs to bathroom, stands in bathroom line, returns to seat, squeezing past large and small people…possibly (if you drank a glass of water or enjoyed a drink with lunch or dinner) you will repeat the process at intermission. I am going to talk about all that theater, later but must digest the differences between the three generally, and consider the various personal lenses through which I’ve viewed them.
I must add quickly…the three plays we have seen have made all of that worthwhile, mostly brilliant in fact. But now I am tired, really tired. We’ve walked everywhere so far: 9 1/3, 7 1/2, 5 1/2 miles and Jasper Johns exhibit, dance performance and eating! Tired.
And happy. Words and pictures from the Jasper Johns exhibit at the Whitney. It was brilliant, especially so for me since I had not considered his work beyond the usual flag and a few other images. That’s embarrassing considering his importance to the contemporary art world. See (https://whitney.org/exhibitions/jasper-johns). Also considering Johns represented the U.S. at the only Venice Biennale I ever attended.
Now after knowing too little about his work, I must explore further because I find myself absolutely enthralled by the maps. And If George Bush can turn his life to the worthy cause of art in his retirement, why can’t I turn my many many maps of all sizes, shapes and conditions into art projects in my not-too-distant retirement. I’m going to gather them all and start building a supply of paint and chalk and colored pens and pencils and glue and photos and scissor and whatever else I can think of…short of glitter and sharp objects. And I’m going to take a class or two and make Christmas presents for my children and grandchildren’s closets, to be taken out when I visit. So maybe I’ll really do this…kidding about the presents, kids. I think.
It’s a great trip. More about theater after a day off hanging out with friend Cathy tomorrow.
Here are a few glimpses of Jasper Johns.