Monday, April 16, 2007

Solo portrait

Anthony complained that he has missed my blog. He is away in Houston all week, so I am single-parenting it and have had no time to update. I am exhausted, and any secretive thoughts I may have had in a moment of irritation about being able to do it all myself better are more than remedied. What follows is a post started and interrupted, now completed, which may suffer from lack of editing.

"I saw some paintings of ballet dancers at a museum in Houston by Degas," Anna told her ballet teacher Monday. She was excited to share this with her teacher, and practiced correctly pronouncing Degas most of the drive to the studio.

Her teacher is a reserved, kind German woman, a retired dancer. "Really?" she said, arching an eyebrow. "I'll bet most little girls your age don't know who that is."

I was so proud of her for bravely volunteering this information to her teacher. Then, she and Colin had one of their best classes yet. Anna always enthusiastically participates, but I can really she her progressing - lengthening her neck, pointing her toes, copying her teacher's arm movements.

Colin has waxed and waned on the ballet front. Yes, internet, I take my son to ballet class, because I do not think it's at all sissy (hello? Baryshnikov!), and I think Colin could benefit from the structure, discipline, and physical activity. OK, also it's way easier for them both to be in the same activity at the same time. This week, Colin did very well in class, and the office manager told me that the instructor is thrilled that a boy is participating. I had not picked up on that previously (she is reserved!) and worried that Colin was annoying her. We shall see if he sticks with it enough to do the recital in June.

Back to the art exhibit Anna mentioned! We went to Houston this weekend with Anthony, to see my parents' new beautiful condo, and to visit with our cousins and Auntie Steph. On Sunday before leaving, we went by the Museum of Fine Art, which has a visiting exhibit of many incredible impressionist pieces. Anna liked the Degas, but her favorite was Monet's Water lilies. Stephanie liked the Renoir, and I loved the 2 Van Gogh pieces, especially the cypresses. His paintings are so full of passion and turmoil to me. We were all riveted by a painting of Joan d'Arc, standing in her parents' garden, haunted by the voices she hears from ephemeral angels, barely visible behind her. Colin mostly moaned about wanting to ride the elevator the last 30 minutes we were there.

If you are anywhere near Houston in the next few weeks, the exhibit is well worth the trip.


get2eric said...

It was great having you all in Houston. Thanks again Anth for the sound system, although, it still baffles me and I cannot watch live TV when TIVO is recording. Oh well, I still have more than I need.
I too have a favorite from the impressionist exhibit. It was a very interesting painting by Jean-Leon Gerome called Pygmalion and Galatea....... Google it for more info. And, too, look at another painting he did about a slave market...............
I liked the exhibit so much I'm going again for a second gander manana.
One complaint, there aren't enough Monets.

Laura said...

Ooh, your museum excursion sounds fun. The first year I lived in Maine, Dad and I drove to Boston for a Monet exhibit. It was extraordinary. Will never forget it!

Sinda said...

OH, I have been wanting to go. I am a slut for the impressionists...and I love their permanent collection as well. Maybe we'll get down there before it ends.

We have a few of those sets of "Art CArds" - one is a Go Fish game where you collect all 4 of an artisit's prints - the girls love it, and I like it that tey are learning the names of the works. Plus, it's a game for readers and non-readers - called Go Fish for Art.

Lisa said...

Did you go through the blue tunnel?
I love that thing!

ColeBugsmommy said...

I love the Water Lilies painting too! Such wonderful color.

I took Cole to "Muster Days" at Camp Mabry which was a wonderful learning experience for both mom and son. It so fun to watch them learn new things.

Jennifer said...

Oh yeah, the blue tunnel! It was so surreal! I kept imagining spooky space-age techno music as I walked through it.

Cousin Bevie said...

Hey Jenn! I think I'm going down to Houston in a week or so with my friend to see the exhibit! I can't wait.

Glad you all had a good time...
Love ya

get2eric said...

Well I was wrong. There are 10 Monets. More representation than any other artist.
The tunnel was blue when I entered and red on exit.
Bev, they offer an audio tour which comes with the price of the entry fee and they provide a little headset and a map which helps you keep track of the rooms.

c.flicken said...

Baryshnikov is sex on legs, honey, you're right!