maandag 8 januari 2018

Tickled pink

Time moves on relentlessly, each day a page torn off the new year's calendar, at this time of year still promising endless possibilities.



But before we plunge headlong into the new year, I am setting the time machine one more time for last month.

It was on Boxing Day that the sun finally made a timid appearance and as we had been cooped up inside for long enough, a bracing walk was what we needed.

Our destination was one of our favourite parks in Antwerp, Middelheim, which is a less than fifteen minute drive from our home.



It was just our luck that once we'd got out of our car, the sun had disappeared behind some nasty looking clouds, and a cold wind was blowing when we crossed the open space leading up to the main part of the park.



Things warmed up considerably once we were under the shelter of the trees, helped by the occasional appearance of the sun, who was trying her very best to keep one step ahead of the persistant clouds.


My outfit of the day was a long sleeved black, floral patterned dress, with a full skirt and a cowl neck, which of course isn't visible here. I wore it with a green cardigan, the sleeves of which are just peeping out from under my jacket's sleeves, green tights and black boots.

You can have a better look at the dress here.

My green fur-collared jacket, warm yellow chunky knit scarf and red beret were keeping me warm and toasty.

Oh, and a pair of fingerless gloves, necessary for taking photographs!



If you've been following my blog for a while, you might remember our previous visits to this open air museum with its eclectic collection of sculptures.



This really is a park for all seasons, although some of the sculptures were covered up or even removed to protect them from harsh winter conditions.


In this empty space, the artwork hasn't been removed at all. Here, the visitor is encouraged to become an artwork for the duration of one minute. Or long enough to strike some silly poses and make some photographs!

Although we took a different route than usual, the Braem Pavilion pulled us in like a magnet, the low, curvy, white building appearing like a mirage through the trees.



The pavilion usually hosts an exhibition of some sort and this time was no exception.

The current exhibition, called Recall Sculpture, shows a collection of sculptures on loan from the Royal Museum of Fine Arts Antwerp (KMSKA), and as they were originally purchased at one of the biennial exhibitions organised by the Middelheim Museum from 1951 until 1989, they have, in a way, come home!

Clockwise from top right: Door (1975), by Erzebet Schaar (bronze), Rain (1957), by Mark Macken (bronze), Saturne (1962) by Julio Gero (iron) and Omaggio al Cosmonauta Nr. 2 (1962) by Arnaldo Pomodoro (bronze).


Fausto Melotti, The Dance, 1973 (gilded brass and plexi)


Apart from a few exceptions, the majority of the pieces on show were table top sculptures which were presented on raised platforms.

I grabbed a brochure, so that I could identify the pieces later, but unfortunately it only showed the placement of the sculptures with a list of numbers, making the artwork difficult to identify later and requiring a fair amount of guessing and googling for this post.



I loved the backdrop of floor length dusky pink gauzy curtains, which really offset the sculptures, bathing them in a warm glow.


Clockwise from top left: me looking at Peace (1952) by Mark Macken (bronze), detail of The Big Dancer (1951-53) by Marino Marini (bronze), Standing Girl (1949) by Charles Leplae (terracotta) and detail of top left.

The works all date from the 1950s to the 1970s, a period during which artists broke free from the oppressive straitjacket of the war years, resulting in a wide variety of materials and themes, which was in sharp contrast with the government restraints on art during wartime.


Emerging from the warmth of the pavilion, we continued our walk, crossing Ai Weiwei's Bridge Without a Name.



The museum's café inside the park's castle was beckoning with hot drinks, in my case a delicious hot chocolate topped with whipped cream!




Dusk was falling rapidly, the gloaming providing an eerie shadowplay of silhouetted artwork, bare-limbed trees and fluffy white Clematis seed heads.

Refreshed in both body and soul, we made our exit the way we started, through the Artist's Entrance (created by Dutch artist John Körmeling), proclaiming some of the resident artists' names in lights.

Linking to Patti's Visible Monday at Not Dead Yet Style for the first time this year!

34 opmerkingen:

  1. The bronze sculptures are fascinating, and I do love your bright color mix while keeping warm! Thanks for linking up, xo

    -Patti
    http://notdeadyetstyle.com

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  2. Wow wonderful sculptures. Thank you for these nice walk.
    Ann I love your outfit with this stunning green :)
    Huge hug tina

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    1. Thanks you Tina. That green jacket was definitely one of my best buys of last year! xxx

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  3. There are some great sculptures and the buildings are wonderful too.
    I absolutely love the combination of colours you are wearing, you look fab xxx

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    1. Thank you Sally! Middelheim really is a most wonderful park! xxx

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  4. It is wonderful it was warm enough to venture out for a walk! I can't wait till our weather turns warm enough for walks again...in about 4 months! Ha!

    Love the brightness of your outfit, especially that shot of you on the bridge.

    You do seem to have loads of interesting art to see in your neck of the woods. Always a wonderful break for the mind in the winter months.

    Suzanne

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    1. Thank you Suzanne! That photo of me on the bridge was one of my favourites too. xxx

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  5. Wow! Such beautiful sculptures surrounded by nature's beauty. I enjoyed seeing you as a sculpture too, Ann! ;) I love your outfit: the green tights are fab! I love that shade of green. That hot chocolate with whipped cream also looks like a work of art! ;) XXX

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    1. Thank you Sasha! I do love green, and that shade in particular. xxx

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  6. I love the way you've combined the bright colours, especially that wonderful scarf! Always enjoy when you take us readers someplace interesting-I learn so much from you.

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    1. Thank you Goody, and I'm glad you enjoyed the visit. It's somewhere we visit again and again, and it's never ever boring! xxx

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  7. Your outfit looks gorgeous Ann. I love the colours. Thank you for showing around the park. Some interesting sculptures there xx

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  8. Yes, I've recognized some of the sculpture - what a beautiful park, indeed good for body and soul! All my favorite places to walk are a bit further than 15 minutes drive, alas (about 30 to 40 min), so it really adds up. Otherwise I would walk there every day! Or so I think. :)

    I love your cheerful outfit with bright colors against the black floral dress (it makes me want to wear my dark florals and buy colored tights!).

    Have a wonderful week, dear Ann! Hope the sun will make more and more appearance really soon! <3 <3 <3

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    1. Thank you Natalia! We have a couple of favourite places nearby, but none within walking distance, really. Oh, and you should definitely buy some coloured tights, they would suit you well! xxx

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  9. That is some lovely sculpture. I love the open-air pieces, especially the one where you are the art! How fun, thank you so much for sharing this with us!

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    1. Thank you Sheila, I quite enjoyed being a work of art for a minute ;-) xxx

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  10. love your reports from that park!! nature and art together, available at the fingertips - totally fabulous!
    the pink curtains are something to remember for the cottage......
    and you´r wearing glorious bright colors against the december gloom!! <3
    hug you! xxxxx

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    1. Thank you Beate, I'm glad you enjoyed it. We do have some curtains in a similar shade in our spare room. Not gauzy ones, though. xxx

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  11. What a lovely idea to get out on Boxing Day for a little fresh air and culture. The Erwin Wurm 'sculpture' really made me chuckle.
    xx

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    1. Thank you Hazel! At first I thought the actual artwork had been taken away, but then I clocked on and did my bit ;-) xxx

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  12. what a lovely walk!, and very interesting sculptures!, I always enjoy your reports on parks and excursions!
    And so lovely outfit too!, your floral dress looks awesome and matches all the colors, creating a lovely ensemble with your tights, scarf and beret, and the cute coat! It's delightful to see you wearing colors and prints!
    besos

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    1. Thank you Monica! That floral dress is definitely one of my favourites. I love the colours of the print, and it's a nice shape on me as well. xxx

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  13. Well you're certainly the brightest and cheeriest sculpture! I do love seeing your park pictures, you are spoilt with some lovely settings where you live. Keep the colour coming, it's truly depressing and grey here...!xx

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    1. Thank you, although I think we are not nearly as spoilt as you are. But then again, I admit having a soft spot for Wales! xxx

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  14. I remember your previous post about this open air museum, it's nice to be back. I wonder how much Erwin Wurm was paid for his 'artwork' or perhaps it is 'on loan' to the park?? Ahem.
    Your colourful outfit certainly was the perfect antidote for such a gloomy day and I'm sure that hot chocolate was much appreciated after your bracing walk. xxx

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    1. I've read that it's a series the illustrious Mr. Wurm has been doing since the 1980s, and you're supposed to follow instructions on how to pose. If there were any instructions, I didn't see them. Maybe they were on loan to another museum ;-) xxx

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  15. Aaah, you bring the sunshine with all your fabulous colours.

    I wonder if Wurm has sold that sculpture to anyone else. And how would anyone identify a fake? ;-)

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    1. Thank you Mim. I've read that he's done a series of them, and there are supposed to be instructions on how to pose. Since I didn't see any instructions, maybe this WAS a fake ;-) xxx

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  16. What brilliant sculptures! The parks in Belgium seem very interesting and full of quirky artefacts...

    Loved you outfit and I'm very taken with your red beret. It is different to other berets in that it seems to have pin tucks in it which is lovely!

    Hope you're keeping dry and warm...
    xxx

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    1. Thank you Veronica! The pin tucks are what made me buy the beret. I already had a plain red one, but this one's so much lovelier. xxx

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