Free, Fun and Fabulous

 Every now and then I need to leave the farmette and get a little culture.  Collecting farm fresh eggs and enjoying the country lake breezes is wonderful but sometimes I need to see people and things and cute little boutiques and art and ......... you get the picture.   A trip into the city down the middle road was just beautiful on this gorgeous late Spring day. We decided to go see the newly transformed Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.  It was  free, fun and fabulous!

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts houses an amazing permanent collection of more than twenty-two thousand works of art from almost every major world culture.  Noteworthy are the museum's collections of Art Nouveau, Art Deco, and Modern and Contemporary American Art.  The VMFA has its origins in a 1919 donation of 50 paintings to the state by John Barton Payne.  He, along with the then Governor of Virginia and the Federal Works Projects Administration,  secured federal funding to augment state funding for this fine museum.  It opened in 1936 on Richmond's majestic and grand thoroughfare, The Boulevard. 

In 2003, VMFA unveiled a master plan for a huge multi- million dollar expansion and transformation of its 13-1/2 acre campus designed by London-based architect,  Rick Mather.  The grand opening for this newly transformed museum was May 1, 2010.  Bobby G. and I were duly impressed and had a fabulous Sunday afternoon touring this beautiful place.   I even thought the rock landscaping looked like a beautiful piece of art.  It looked as though each individual rock had been hand placed.

 I was unable to take photos of the art work for you but I was able to snap a few pictures of some of the impressive displays.  At the our entrance was this very colorful sculpture.  Further on, was the pop art gallery.  To be honest, pop art is not my favorite.  I just don't get it and think maybe I feel like it's something I myself could easily do, which I have and displayed.  Or maybe it's just non-sense to my untrained  and uneducated eye.

 Larger than life cubism art work.

The truly gorgeous artistic pieces to me, are the amazing antique oil paintings from centuries ago.  The portraits with the eyes that follow you; and the multi-layered ruffly lace collars that are so detailed they look like photographs.
I also fell in love with the architecture of the inside of this beautiful place that involved the European arts.  Everything that I am drawn to when out "treasure hunting" was exactly what I was drawn to inside this museum.  I love the very ornate gold topped marble columns that created part of the grand entrance to the Northern baroque oil paintings gallery and  exquisite wool and silk story telling tapestries.   

I love the history paintings and the stories, real or not, that they tell.  The angels and the cherubs, the pastoral scenes and the butterflies, again alluding to what I love to find on my treasure hunts for you.  I was thrilled to see some of the beautiful floral paintings that reflect the old Sunday Afternoon amateur paintings I collect for you.   Those ladies of leisure who spent their afternoons hoping to emulate the petals of a rose as the old masters did.  This is a photograph of a postcard I bought.  The fruit so life like and real you can hear the fly buzzing around it.

I have listed in The Vintage Nest boutique one antique painting that reflects one  of the pieces I saw in the museum.  This one reminds me so much of a French pastoral scene
and it's just charming!

And another gorgeous old antique painting in the shop shows this amateur Sunday painter was learning to put pretty detail in her pink peony flowers.

I also enjoyed seeing the incredible collection of fine ornate silver compotes, candlesticks, bowls, tea caddies and tureens and the amazing antique French furniture.   I can't imagine going to dinner at the bequeaths home of that amazing collection. Bobby G, who is a fine painter in his own right, enjoyed the old British animal paintings of dogs and horses. After seeing the Faberge pieces we headed to the museum's shop.  I always think museum shops have the most delightful and beautiful items to buy and this one was no different.  One item that particularly caught my eye were the most gorgeous hand crafted wool felted cameo necklaces  BUT I have to say I have seen just as beautiful pieces made right here in blog land and at Etsy.....from pottery to scarves there are some very very talented bloggers.  We ended this very enjoyable afternoon with a stop at the Best Cafe, where we sat waterside and enjoyed a drink and the  best tasting  melt in your mouth sliver of fudge pie heaven I have ever tasted.Again, due to museum rules I was not allowed to take pictures of the food.............just kidding!....Fact is, we ate it before I even thought to take a photo. :) 

Sometimes I forget to take advantage of all the fabulous resources right here within just a short distance of my home.  No need to pay tons of money for an expensive vacation.  Just take a day or two off from work, pack a picnic lunch and visit what is nearby.  It's a good thing!  :)  Have a great week and I'll see you soon.


Blondie's Journal said...

The museum sounds like a wonderful place to visit. I have never really been a fan of pop art either...no, I don't understand it and I prefer The Impressionists above all, all of those soft soothing color palettes.

Thanks for the tour, Lynn!


The Vintage Vagablonde said...

Howdy MH~.....
Missed ya :)
I am now blogging from my new laptop....I am so technoloy~lame.
I do love it though(never text or tweet).

I browsed through your post and found the one I have been searching for.....I have chicken envy! I LOVE the COOP.

As always....I flutter from one thing to the next....latest adventure!Flea Market selling with my daughter.We split the Profits(couldn't do it without her help).

It is tiring but I love the people you meet and it is so fun to dress in Vintage attire. I had one customer come back the next day..just to see what I would wear~I loved that!

Hope all is well.....Hugs~Sheri

Jennifer said...

I love art museums! There is something so peaceful and intelligent about visiting one. How great that you and Bobby G got to spend an afternoon in such a delightful place! A break from the farm is always welcome.

Hope the remainder of your week continues to be as enjoyable as your Sunday.


www.MaisonStGermain.com said...

Art museums are so much fun to visit. It is sometimes refreashing to get out of our own elements to see what is new or old out there. But always great to come back home, sometimes with a new perspective:)
Blog: Capers of the vintage vixens

Maison Beldecor said...

Dear Lynn
thank you so much for your lovely comment. The pics from your museum tour are very interesting, I love the old paintings, the atmosphere of museums are sophisticated and I like it so much... Have a great week, warm greetings from Germany

BonjourRomance said...

Bonjour Lynn,
Such beautiful floral painting, and the little boy and girl in such detail. Looks like a great museum. On a side note, I was born in Virginia so I have a soft spot for this pretty state.
Good week to you,
P.S. I Sent over an email I hope answers your question!

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Lynn, you aren't kidding. That painting is STUNNING! Love it!

I enjoy a wide range of art, and I love everything from primitives to old masters to pop art. It depends solely on the piece.

I'm glad you had such a nice day. This makes me want to tour a local museum. Thanks for the impetus to do so.



Farmgirl Paints said...

I love going to museums...especially art museums. Great pics. Love the one that looked like crayons pointing up. It takes all kinds doesn't it:)

abeachcottage said...

g'day, love the museum trip but pop art, errm nope, not getting it any which way at all

i hear you with getting out...funny really, we came to the other side of the world and now I exist in the same suburb on the same few roads....and all around me are delights just waiting to be discovered


koralee said...

This museum looks amazing...oh what a nice day you had! Thanks for sharing. xoxo

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