Friday, November 2, 2007

Not knitting, but beautiful all the same.

Last July, Mr. Tall and I visited Paris for a long weekend. We had been living in the UK for a month and couldn't wait to get out and explore "the continent" a bit more. It was in Paris that we really developed an appreciation for art museums.

While we liked The Louvre, we preferred Musee d'Orsay. Perhaps it was the much more manageable size, or perhaps it was just the style - d'Orsay exhibits a lot of impressionist art. At the time, there was a special exhibit on the works of J. F. Willumsen. Willumsen (1863-1958) was a Danish painter, sculptor, ceramist, architect, and photographer.

One work in particular caught my eye.

Willumsen - A Mountain Climber, 1904

There are so many things I love about this work of art. I love the sense of strength and confidence emanating from the woman while she is resting. I imagine that she is looking down into a valley, reflecting on the beauty of the area instead of congratulating herself for reaching that point (as I would likely be doing). I love that my reaction to this artwork is to feel a sense of peaceful empowerment. The colors and technique astound me - especially in person.

Ever since stumbling across Willumsen at d'Orsay, I've changed my museum-visiting strategy. I used to go into a museum with the intention of seeing the popular highlights. Now, my goal is to find other unknown-to-me artists, much like Willumsen, whose work strikes me.