METROPOLITAN MUSEUM

METROPOLITAN MUSEUM

Fashion Collection at the Met

Fashion Collection at the Met

Can you really see New York in three days? We sure tried, we wanted to give Lana, our guest, the grand tour. In an email quote from her today. She said, “And my visit with you is still a highlight, despite the speed, as u say.”

Metropolitan Fashion collection

Metropolitan Fashion collection

I hoped we would get to at least two museums on Friday, the 5th, but alas, after only one, we were ready for the heap. Have you been to the Metropolitan lately? Egad, it’s a few cities in one building. It’s a place to get your fill of the innovative and of antiquity. The rooftop is amazing. If you don’t go anywhere else in this building, you must visit the rooftop. The glass-like structure, a 2-way mirror was fun, like the fun-house mirrors in a carnival.  The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Rooftop glass garden exhibit until Nov. 2nd

Rooftop glass 2-way mirror garden exhibit until Nov. 2nd

Glass structure

Glass structure

There is an app for the Met, so you can plan your visit, but since I claim naivety in the app realm, we visited the Met without a plan.  At one time, I was familiar with the museum. I thought there would be no problem. I was sorely mistaken. The museum app starts with a lovely, clean design that begs to be explored. It doesn’t open on a home screen, but takes you immediately to its featured exhibitions, listing those that will end soonest at the top and exhorting you to “catch them while you can.” Clicking onto each exhibit’s page provides a nice description of the work being shown, while other sections of the app showcase both masterpieces and oddities in the museum’s extensive collection. These tabs are expertly curated, and echo the Met’s larger social media strategy, which feels surprisingly current for an institution filled with antiquities.

Entry into Temple Dendoor

Entry into Temple Dendoor

I was overwhelmed. But after a brief deep breath, I said, “Follow me.” I led Lana, and hubby Tom to the newest exhibition. The Temple of Dendur (Dendoor in nineteenth century sources) is an Egyptian temple that was built by the Roman governor of Egypt, Petronius, around 15 BC and dedicated to Isis, Osiris, as well as two deified sons of a local Nubian chieftain, Pediese (“he whom Isis has given”) and Pihor (“he who belongs to Horus“). The temple was commissioned by Emperor Augustus of Rome and has been exhibited in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York since 1978. If you haven’t seen this, it’s worth the trip, you get to walk through a real Egyptian temple. Those folks were really small, the door openings are quite narrow.

Central Park

Central Park

Lunch in the Member’s dining room, was the delight of the day, a lovely quiet space overlooking Central Park. Best place in the museum to dine. Next stop was to see the paintings, as much as we had the energy to see. 15-17th century, 18th century Impressionism, 19th century Hudson River, it was endless. To get to each exhibit, we walked miles and miles and miles. The museum is ten cities in one.

Monet

Monet

We had lots to see, so we ran, didn’t walk, over to the American Wing, since this was Lana’s first visit to America. Make sense? We whizzed through, which was frustrating for me since furniture and the decorative arts is part of my soul. But most important, I showed Lana and Tom (who bless his heart, chauffeured us into and out of the city) the Herter Brothers furniture that once graced the rooms at Lockwood, the very same company that decorated the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion in 1867. I had to show Lana Lockwood, although we didn’t get there until Monday on the way to the airport.  Where else would she get her very own private tour of an American National historic landmark built in 1867.

What is your favorite at the Metropolitan Museum?

Albert Bierstadt part of an American Indian painting

Albert Bierstadt part of an American Indian painting in the West.

MOSHE SAFTIE: HABITAT 67 MONTREAL

MOSHE SAFTIE: HABITAT 67 MONTREAL

Habitat ’67 – Moshe Safdie

Moshe Safdie received an invitation from me to speak to my students studying design in the early 80’s. Due to time restraints, he wrote a lovely letter of refusal. One of my constituents and good friend asked me to do a blog about Mr. Safdie. It is my pleasure to accept her invitation to write about a favorite architect.
The design, “Habitat 67” was an early invention of Mr. Safdie. Multifamily concrete stacked modular units, it was a study in people placement and the practical use of space. He designed the buildings in 1967 for the Montreal Exposition. Although, someone I know who visited the Exposition, experienced the architecture and found it “cold.” Still it was an excellent example of industrially produced modular housing. The design showcased construction techniques unheard of at the time.
In March, 2009, Habitat 67 received the classification of a historic monument.

According to “e-architect”, Habitat 67 began life as a master’s thesis project prepared in 1961 by Mr. Safdie, then an architecture student at McGill University. He came up with the idea of a high density apartment building that would provide residents with privacy as well as peace and quiet. He was invited to develop his idea for Expo 67 and did so alongside engineer August E. Komendant. By the time the universal exhibition came round, the project was partially completed, and 26 apartments were reserved for the Expo. The housing complex had 354 prefabricated units, initially forming 158 one or two story apartments with one to four bedrooms. The apartments were divided into three pyramids.  Each apartment featured a landscaped garden built on the roof of the level below. Follow the link to check out this exciting property.  Waterfront property and tennis courts.

Mr Safdie established his architectural practice in 1964  in Montreal to design and supervise the construction of Habitat 67. Today the principal office is in Boston, Massachusetts with branch offices in Jerusalem, Toronto, and Singapore. The international practice provides a full range of urban planning, architectural and interior design services. Activities range from the design of public institutions-including museums, performing arts centers, libraries, and university campuses-to the design of airports. housing, mixed-use complexes, and new communities.

Below is a sample of his current innovative work.

Marina Bay Sands Moshe Safdie, Singapore

Marina-Bay-Sands-Architecture–Moshe-Safdie-Singapore-yatzer_13.jpg

Luxury hotel, Marina Bay Sands recently opened the doors of its microcosm to the public and has already wowed tourists with its unique and luxurious design. Up at the top, a pool for your swimming pleasure.

The Marina Bay Sands hotel is located in Singapore has been designed with one goal in mind, to be the leading business, leisure and entertainment destination in Asia. It holds the title of the most expensive hotel built till this day, as its investment by the Las Vegas Sands Corporation reaches $5 billion. The Marina Bay Sands hotel is a mixed-use integrated resort with 2,560-rooms, three 55-storey towers, a 150-meters infinity pool on top of the towers, an indoor canal, a museum shaped like a lotus flower, the best shopping mall in Asia and world-class celebrity chef restaurants.  Furthermore, it includes theatres, an outdoor event plaza, a convention center and a casino with private gaming rooms for premium players.

If you wanted apartment living, waterfront, with all the luxuries and amenities, would Habitat interest you? Or do you prefer the kind of living that affords more privacy?

Happy Thanksgiving and many blessings to you all. I will be back in two weeks.

 

 

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