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Archive for the ‘Trip abroad’ Category

This is a huge area of East German built factories turned into a complex of contemporary art galleries, trendy cafes and design shops.  It takes a while to get there but is very interesting to wander around the area and in and out of the galleries, Chinese and internationally owned.  Some of them are well established and exhibit big names; others much smaller with up and coming Chinese artists.  Scattered about the site are a quirky sculptures and graffiti.  Saturdays are supposed to be very busy and closed Mondays.  Worth a trip out there to see perhaps an unexpected and thriving art scene.

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I was very lucky to visit Beijing, Tokyo and Kyoto over the Easter break.  Tokyo had long been on a list of places to visit but I had been waiting for Yayoi Kusama to open her long-awaited gallery.  It opened in late 2017 and I managed to get scarce tickets.  Only complaint – far too small!  It is on a small plot of land so very narrow but tall.  There is a permanent exhibition on one floor, rotating one on another, a floor with pumpkin infinity mirrors and a gold and pink pumpkin open to the sky on the top floor.  Great lift with spotty infinity mirrors and a bonus, that many visitors would not have seen, red spot infinity mirrors in the ground floor toilet!  If you are going make sure you check website for tickets couple of months ahead or buy from a ticket reseller.  Tips: go to the loo when you are there and keep yourself out of the photo and don’t buy your Yayoi memorabilia from the gallery shop (limited and expensive); try M0MA shop near Cat Street in Harajuku.

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Found safe and sound in the British Museum.  So 3 months after seeing the heads on Easter Island I’ve now seen the full set.  And magnificent it is too!

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I spent a few days in Malaga prior to Easter which was not invoking excitement in anyone who asked us where we were going. However, if you like art (and cheese, red wine, great tapas, beach bars and amazing easter processions) then this is the city for you.  Malaga has the Museo Picasso, Centro Pompidou, CAC Contemporary Art Museum (with great grafitti nearby) and the ones we didn’t make it to: Carmen Thyssen Museum,   Russian Collection, Glass Museum and the Wine Museum (not art but sounds like it is worth spending time there!).  Within a short drive is the Ralli Museum near Marbella which we had to ourselves and was right by the beach.  Malaga is an interesting and beautiful city and worth a weekend away.

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The trip to Paris was arranged to see the new Fondation Louis Vuitton, the new building designed by Frank Gehry.  It is an impressive building all wood, glass and water with several floors going up onto the rooftop.  As an admirer of Gehry buildings, and having travelled distances to see them, I was not disappointed and will return again to enjoy the space.  We were very lucky that Olafur Eliasson had an exhibition on designed to fit the space – he is the chap that installed the sun in the Turbine Hall at the Tate Modern.  The exhibits were full of light, shadow and mirrors, disorientating but fun.  Cannot recommend this enough.

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I cannot remember the Musee Picasso from 25+ years ago but apparently this newly laid out museum has much more space and more work on display.  I wasn’t that excited about going back there as the trip was mainly to see the Fondation Louis Vuitton.  However, the wide range of print, sculpture, drawings and paintings, mainly in chronological order but sometimes themed, does leave you in awe as the body of work Picasso left behind.   It is a 15 minute walk from Pompidou so easy to take in the Koons and Picasso together.

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Before Xmas I booked the Eurostar to Paris for a day trip to see the new Fondation Louis Vuitton designed by Frank Gehry.   Looking to fill in some time we also booked tickets to see the Picasso Museum redesign having visited it almost 30 years ago.  However, I then read that Jeff Koons had a retrospective at the Pompidou and that we were going to be very lucky in seeing Olafur Eliasson within the Fondation.  Wonderful day out starting with Koons.

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