An Alternative Perspective
New Year's Eve at the de Young Museum, shaken not stirred with a twist.
I enjoy visiting museums but I am much too ADD to move slowly controlled by a voice in a box with small rocks stuck in my ears. My thoughts only bleed over the narrators words with my own thoughts, like typing over words on paper. What a mess!
Getting off track. I know.
When asked if I would like to visit the de Young Museum in San Francisco with a private guide I thought that would be an fun way to kick off New Year's Eve. Always intrigued by a new adventure of course I said yes. So we headed off across the Bay Bridge through the beautiful Golden Gate Park. As soon as I stepped foot on the grounds near the overflowing water fountain between, where the dinosaurs are housed and the de Young I could see my young self running around with my elementary school friends, boys and girls. (Two of those little childhood friends now work for me! How funny life is.) Field trips to the Natural History Museum ( aka California Academy of Sciences ) were welcomed excursions that took us away from school in our small town of Piedmont across the bridge in the East Bay.
Oh yea, back to the story at hand.
As we waited for our hostess we perused the gift shop and cafe and of course, texted, Instagrammed and Twittered. I think Adam was working while getting a score on some football game - and mourning the end of the season. "Just 6 games left," he said. I didn't know how to respond. Football, ah, how boring. The only time it wasn't boring was when I was a cheerleader and a pom pon girl. I loved those days! I will not lie!
Museums Are F***ing Awesome - if that is any indication of the style of our tour to come. Kayla had pink hair, a back or side sack, and an iPad. And she was from San Francisco - if we had a cocktail in hand we would be sipping every time she reminded us, she was from San Francisco - she informed us.
I learn, remember and take in information visually, and through story telling so I was totally into this way we were about to tour the museum with Kayla. Kayla is an actor and writer, so this was right up her alley. Taking the mundane and making it memorable. Whether that was sharing dirt on why the de Young Museum's San Francisco socialite and director was fired, or how she had a photograph commissioned of herself staged in a ball gown while her Asian maid was in full housekeeper garb, set off to the right. Now I just report the facts, I don't make them up! So don't kill the messenger.
I learned things like, the concept of "The Power Pose.
Did you know The Power Pose can change your life? Click to read more on that later, please.
Or how tweaked artists really are.
What about Ana? Where's Ana? Museum goers mourn her death, husband acquitted although many heard Ana screaming and her husband had marks on his body. She "fell" 30 floors from their apartment. Now when would you hear a story like that unless you were taking a tour with MUSEUM HACK?
How about partying with Salvador Dali, the one with the weird mustache, friends with Walt Disney and was known for throwing utterly ridiculous and outrageous parties that would not fly today - animal rights and all for one. Lion Cubs and porcupines are just a few animals that were in attendance. ( Since I am visual I searched Salvador Dali in Google Images for your viewing pleasure. )
And the story of Michael Rockefeller.
We were in the least visited part of the museum, dark and gloomy with a plethora of witch doctors, ancestor skulls, knives, bugs and naked warriors with long penises.
Which leads me to the story about Michael Rockefeller. A rich kid with nothing to do he told his parents he was off to buy more art for the family art collection. Cut To The Chase: The Asmat* people believed when someone died, someone had to pay for that persons death, as it was not an accident, or so they believed. Well, if you are following along, that is what they think happened to Michael Rock! He went in search of art and got eaten! Oh, so sad!
Or how art tells a story. A statue of a woman depicted wearing her hair like the newly dead, Princess Leia and how, in the olden days if you wore your hair up with two donut looking things on either side of your head that meant you were not married. When you married, you would never wear your hair up again.
And what about Saint Sebastian, the handsome and cut Saint of Athletes and soldiers.
I rather enjoyed the real art that was not real. It's called Trompe l'Oeil: "Still Life, which means ("fool the eye") a French term for paintings that attempt to trick the viewer into thinking that their subjects are real..."
The oranges with tissue is my favorite plus a few others. I could stare at these paintings all day long. "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."
And the "Photo Shop Gallery" as Kayla described it whereas the paintings, Oil on Canvas, yet are embellished like a postcard. She proceeded to show us two images on her iPad to demonstrate what she meant. The first image a photo of Ocean Beach in San Francisco whereas the beach was filled with sunbathers in yes, bathing suits and the sun was shining. The other photograph depicted Ocean Beach, the fog, no one in swim suits, dark and gloomy .. another words -- reality, make believe, better then it really is.
Throughout the tour we played games. ( Adam of course won the end game! )
Kayla had each of us identify a painting we liked and she took our photo in front of it. At the end of the tour she gave us each a photograph she took with her Poloroid camera. I of course, stood in front of the Ruins of the Roman Theatre in Taormina, Sicily, an oil on canvas. I had visited those ruins a few years ago and to me it looked exactly the same. Well of course, we always romanticize even the worst of trips! LOL! Tulum. That's another Blog.
There were so many other random facts and trivia shared with us by Kayla our awesome Museum Hack tour guide. Like the Gilmore Girls ( TV show ). One of the actors loves the de Young Museum so they have a few ugly paintings on the set of GG in their make believe house. Really, we all agreed the paintings they chose were not attractive and actually, kind of creepy.
We also learned about Museum Fatigue. So we sat down to take a rest overlooking the sculpture garden.
Wow, that's twice in the last month I have heard of (fill in the blank ) Fatique.
The other was when I was sharing my story with our friends how I felt like I might faint during my Botox and Filler needling. I didn't, but I sure was light headed! Ann told me I had "Needle Fatigue". Alas, there is also "Museum Fatigue". So our darling tour guide had us sit down and write a postcard and she even stamped it and mailed it for us.
Other games were played, intriguing stories were told and of course, fabulous art admired. Well, of course, "Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder." Like people who are attracted to one another, sometimes none of us, not even our own self can understand it, it is something felt and not seen.
After all that learning we were starved. Well I was just looking forward to my champagne and of course a salad. When will scientists come up with a food pill, eating is just so unnecessary.
Now sipping champagne, not so.
Happy New Year!
Thanks Museum Hack for an awesome tour. We look forward to visiting your tours in NY next, then DC, Chicago and back again to the de Young÷˘ and the California Academy of Arts and Sciences, you know, the dinosaur museum!
Team Building, Bachelorette Parties ... but they should add, or for those with,
To preview more photos from our fabulous day, go to my Facebook page.