Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Washington D.C.

We have traveled all over the world visiting most of Europe's capitols, but we had never visited our own capitol until our daughter moved there, and now I can't understand why we didn't go sooner.  It's a beautiful city and though we've now been many times I don't think we'll ever see it all.
This trip we visited some of the Smithsonian museums, an absolutely incredible collection of 19 museums that were originally funded by an English scientist named James Smithson (1764-1829).
We went to the Freer Gallery a creation of Charles Freer who was a 19th century collector of American artists and amassed the nation's largest collection of James Whistler's work, and it is this rotating collection I always want to see.  On exhibit this time were a number of small engravings, water colors, drawings and one magnificent oil painting, Sweet, Silent Thoughts.  His work is so luminous that it makes me despair of ever painting anything worthwhile.
Then for something completely different we went to the Air and Space Museum to enjoy the history of American flight from the Wright Brothers to the Apollo modules to the Mars rover.  We expected the museum to be packed but it wasn't and we had a great time, could have spent the whole day there, but lunch called.

Charles Lindbers's Spirit of St. Louis




Apollo 11
One of Amelia Earhart's Planes















The Wright Brothers' Plane
Next time it's to the American History Museum, they've got Julia Child's Kitchen and I must see it.

4 comments:

  1. Wow! The gallery and the Air and Space museum look brilliant. What beautiful paintings

    ReplyDelete
  2. You have reminded me that I need to visit Washington. I adore Whistler's work. Sorolla is my other favourite and I have a pathway worn to his home and studio in Madrid. Thank you for posting this

    Have a delightful week
    Helen xx

    ReplyDelete
  3. I'd love to go there some day. That Whistler painting is beautiful - luminous is the perfect word.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I remember going there once when our children were younger. We all stared in wonder at the "Spirit of St. Louis" --so fragile!

    ReplyDelete