Wide Open Spaces

Now I know why
cowboys love the morning.

As azure heavens drop to earth,
winds whip across the prairie
brisk as aftershave.
Fields so wide they hold
every risk a day could bring:
stubborn steer
                                    and
                                                 wayward
                                                                                calves,
muscles pulled and sometimes,
come spring,
a colt or two battles the birth sac
before dropping to earth beneath
the same azure heavens
that greet its callous-handed doula
each
beloved
morning.

 

Photo and poem by Debra B. Darvick

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Yayoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrored Room

This was just so cool. It’s so popular that visitors to Bentonville, Arkansas’ Crystal Bridges Museum are allowed only sixty seconds in this phantasmagora of dotted lanterns. We arrived first thing in the morning. No line. What’s better than sixty seconds in Yayoi Kusama’s dreamscape? Two hundred and forty! This kid at heart couldn’t stop smiling. As always, thanks to Martin for capturing the experience.

Video courtesy of Martin Darvick

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In Our Teeny Tiny Matzah House by Bill and Clair Wurtzel

Oh, what an inventive, sweet, creative, delightful, fun Passover picture book! Illustrated with food collages and told from the viewpoint of the family’s cat, In Our Teeny Tiny Matzah House offers a full house of delight, clever language, and inspiration for your own food art.  

The first night of Passover this year is Monday, April 22. Plenty of time to order the Wurtzels’ wonderful book. But don’t wait that long. Head directly to PJ Library and order your copy.  Do not plan your menus (yet.) Do not invite your guests (yet.) Do not pass over the opportunity to begin this year’s Pesach season by shairing the Wurtzels’ wonderful winsome book.  ‘Nuff said?

 

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Have You Visited Crystal Bridges Museum?

Martin and I recently visited Crystal Bridges Museum in Bentonville, Arkansas. I don’t even know where to begin but I’ll start with something we noticed at the end of our first day’s visit. At the end of the day, neither Martin and nor I were tired. No aching “museum back;” no sensory overload; no pressing need to head to the hotel to rest.

When I mentioned this to a staff member, I learned that Moshe Safdie, the museum’s architect, purposefully designed Crystal Bridges to eliminate museum fatigue. Indeed. Moving from gallery to gallery Martin and I reveled in views of the 120-acre park that surrounds the museum. We alternated enjoying the art with a walk along the wooded trails. Scultpures by Dale Chihuly, Deborah Butterfield (that’s her horse sculpture on the left), Robert Indiana, and others dotted the trail.

We toured the Bachman-Wilson House, one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian homes. Acquired in 2014, the New Jersey home was dismantled and rebuilt within the Museum’s grounds. It was beautiful, peaceful, and quirky. Our guide p0inted out the sightlines unifying outside and inside and shared that the architect coined the phrase “carport.”  It seems Wright despised garages because they eventually became filled with stuff. Taking his inspiration from the French term porte-cochere or covered portal, the carport was the architect’s way of preventing any future pack-ratting. 

I could go on and on, mentioning an expansion that is underway to increase gallery capacity by 65%, a school program that reached 60,000 students last year, and the utterly serene Crystal Bridges Library housing 50,000 volumes. But instead, I’ll simply urge you to check out crystalbridges.org and plan a visit.

From Crystal Bridges Museum website: The mission of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is to welcome all to celebrate the American spirit in a setting that unites the power of art with the beauty of nature. Founded by philanthropist and arts patron Alice Walton, Crystal Bridges is a public non-profit charitable organization. The museum opened on November 11, 2011, and welcomes all with free admission.

Photos courtesy of Martin Darvick.

Rosie the Riveter by Norman Rockwell; an outside view of the museum; view of the Bachman-Wilson House

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