Here are a couple of things that I like: paradigms and open space. Here is a place in Philly that has everything that I like: The Barnes Foundation.
This isn’t an article about Dr. Barnes or his eccentric collection of Post-Expressionist paintings of famous artists such as Cezanne or Matisse. Nor do I have pertained enough information and knowledge to be able to dissertate those mentioned topics. This blog post is a genuine act of appreciation for things that look nice. Things that as soon as I walked in, I was mesmerized, and was completely shut out of the chaotic downtown Philly, into a place of serenity.
Designed by the New York architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, like Vanity Fair described in its article a long while ago, the building illuminates a handsome, self-assured building that has not a whiff of sentimental. The Barnes Foundation, out of everything and anything, is an architect of extraordinary subtlety. To be straightforward, I don’t know much about Dr. Barnes (though I now deeply regret my ignorance); but the architecture has reflected his ideal and artistic vision, that he would not want to his collection to reside in yet another sophisticated but soulless, perfect but superficial art palace.
Barnes Foundation, from my own perspective, is not an educational art institution. It is rather a respected relative’s house that everyone wishes to visit and never wants to leave. Its simplistic but precise attention to details pleases the eyes of any visitor. I looked at the spacious hallway and I loved it. I looked at the marble walls with flakes of gold and I loved it. I looked at the crystal chandeliers and I loved it.
I looked at my ticket and hated it, wondered why it took me this long to be here.
The building is also a clever arrangement, using the translucent windows, between nature and artificial lighting. The main collection section was lit up, making the artworks more appealing and visual. No photography is allowed inside the exhibition so don’t be disappointed.
Every first Sunday of the month, Barnes Foundation offers free access to everyone as a way to encourage art education as well as to support and connect local artists with the general public. Thank you Barnes Foundation for educating me and saving my bank account at the same time.
To my surprise, the Barnes Foundation location nowadays isn’t where Dr. Barnes built his original personal museum (apologize again for my limited information, it didn’t come with a pre-Philadelphia package for expats). Yet even though his will may have changed, the Barnes Foundation we have now, is such an idiosyncrasy successor.
Visit their website and social media accounts to further enjoy this distinctive destination in Philadelphia