Wednesday, August 20, 2008

new york, new york

weather-wise saturday was the most beautiful day of any day I can recall in the longest time. spending the day at the new york botanical garden (nybg) was about the most perfect thing we could have done! I give a heartfelt thanks to my nephew adrian for picking the location of our meeting. on friday morning on was checking my email and had an im from adrian stating "I hear you're going to be in nyc. we're coming to the city (from dc) in a few hours to meet friends for dinner. what do you have going on saturday?"

long story short, I im'd back and we set up a date to meet at the botanical garden the next day. neither adrian nor I knew that there is a henry moore exhibition going on at the nybg! in fact, it just happens to be: the largest outdoor exhibition of Henry Moore's sculpture ever presented in a single venue in the United States.

f & I planned to see adrian and andrea, meet their friends, spend a couple hours at the nybg and move on to some other wondrous new york attraction before it was time to have dinner and games with p&k. I have a special fondness for the work of henry moore so our two hour ramble in the garden turned out to be an all day affair. we started our garden tour at 2 pm and stayed well past the 6 pm closing time of the garden. what we discovered is since they have special events in the garden the 6 pm closing time really is for the special staffed attractions of the garden. another gift of saturday was the opportunity to meet and talk with an incredible artist named aaron rose. you know that adage we all heard from our parents while growing up about not talking to strangers? well, I say pfffft to that! I prefer will rogers take on strangers "A stranger is just a friend I haven't met yet."

back to mr. rose. I met aaron rose while we were in the conifer collection at moore's "three piece reclining figure:draped 1975" - here was this photographer with a most unusual set up of camera and tripod. after he finished capturing the image he was after, I took a couple pics of the piece and then went over to talk with him and ask him about his interesting camera. turns out he constructed the camera and he spoke a bit about his approach to photography and light. he mentioned that he has a project underway to capture the moore pieces in the garden at various times. he was fascinating. I did mentioned that I hope he publishes the pictures he takes of the moore sculptures as I'd be interested in seeing them; thus he said he has a book of work out and I could find it if I googled his name (I don't know if he said google). of course, when I got back to p&k's house I did google his name and this is what I discovered about mr. rose:
Virtually unknown, and working in isolation for years, Aaron Rose quietly slid into the attention of the photography community in 1997, when 5 of his prints were exhibited at the Whitney Biennial. A consummate craftsman, building his own cameras and mixing complex developers using exotic metals, Rose's vision of the world around him is remarkably unique. This first monograph is handsomely printed in quadratone and sure to be a welcome introduction to this elusive figure.
rose's book is still available with many used copies available. you can be sure I'll be adding a copy to my home library!

saturday evening we ate in; p prepared a most delicious dinner - fresh tuna and a wonderful spinach dish for which I must get the recipe. turns out k ate dinner with her cousins earlier after they spent the day visiting the bronx zoo, but she did bring home cannolis from an italian bakery in little italy (apparently the little italy to visit in nyc is in the bronx). after dinner, p & k introduced f & I to "mexican train dominoes" - it was great fun. by the way, the cannolis were fantastic!

we left nyc sunday morning, taking the train to nj to pick up f's truck and load it with a couple pieces of my grandmother's furniture that were being stored at my cousin d's house. afterwards we caravaned to d's brother's gorgeous house in suburban philly where we joined up with the rest of d brothers and their families for a party celebrating the august birthdays. it was a perfect conclusion to a perfect mini-vacation!
as soon as I get my act together I'll be putting up a collection of the henry moore sculptures at the nybg on flickr for anyone interested. as anita feldman, the curator of the henry moore foundation remarked the new york botanical garden is the perfect site for moore's work.

Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Jules Munchin perform the "other" New York, New York... from the film version of "On The Town" (1949)

photos: top- moore's "large two forms" 1966; aaron rose at rest, aaron rose at work; me with snake branch spruce in the benenson ornamental conifers - photo by f; yum!; bottom-some family relaxing by poolside sunday.


tut-tut said...

I love all botanical gardens, but I've never been to the NY or Brooklyn. Would like to go to Wave Hill, too.

How great to see all the Henry Moore. Your photos are really evocative. They are so tactile, aren't they? So smooth . . .

Also wouldn't mind a dip in that pool . . .

WAT said...

This summer has been quite mild, even here in Southern California where it can get brutal. I hope we make it all the way through without too much suffering.

NYC. Sounds divine, but I don't think I'll be able to join ye all for the blogger convention.


Barbara said...

I'm dying to go to NYC to see Hair in Central Park!

Megan said...

Fantastic! Can't believe that guy builds his own cameras. That's very, very cool.

dennis said...

Dennis loves Moore, and that Aaron guy looks interesting too. Dennis thinks you look quite winsome in the forest pose.

Dennis is a bit upset to see that Wat will not make it to NYC-- Dennis must now go and pout.

K. said...

I like the way Steve Earle put it:

I'm going to New York City
I never really been there
Just like the way it sounds
I heard the girls are pretty
There must be something happening there
It's just too big a town

Adrian said...

What a great day it was, indeed! What luck to have happened upon such a great display with stellar weather. Remarkable!