Friday, October 5, 2012

walk like an egyptian

I always find it compelling walking the New York streets for miles - one never knows what one will see next (and I include people as well as static objects).  After our committee ended today I walked up  to the Dahesh museum, which was to have been my big treat here in NYC.  It's a museum of latish C19th and early C20th academic art.  Only - and don't ask how I didn't know this - it functions only as a virtual museum, loaning art works, but at the moment with no permanent display (even more frustrating was finding that its last major loan exhibition was in the spring of this year at Pepperdine, just up the coast in Malibu).  It has a shop, yes, selling lots of postcards of Bougereau and Bazzani and Ballesio. And those last two artists are C19th Italian artists that I've forgotten about if I ever consciously knew about - something that has the same parallel universe effect on me as one of my nightmare dreams when I'm in a second-hand bookstore and I come upon a novel by George Eliot that I've never heard of - but the shop is going to close and throw me out before I can find any money.  Here, on my way back, is a little bit of escaped Orientalism, outside a store in which someone was giving psychic readings - presumably which have to be paid for in cash.

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