Weekend in D.C.

This past weekend, a few of us got timed entry tickets to the National Gallery of Art. On Friday the museum reopened after a six-month hiatus due to a surge of varying viral strains. There were no current exhibitions to view, but while triangulating the galleries one can always find something exciting to see within their “special installations” such as, Marc Chagall’s Orphée mosaic wall c.1968 which was a gift to the Nef family for their Georgetown garden. The artist project — SORRY outside the East Wing by Sarah Cain, Avish Khebrehzadeh, and Kay Rosen. The East Wing is undergoing transformative construction and this artist sign will be up until summer. I’ve listed a few favorites from the outing starting with the colorful banners brightening the outside of the gallery.

The National Gallery of Art and East Wing located on the National Mall between 3rd and 9th Streets, NW in the District of Columbia. Still life with figs and bread by Melendez c.1770. The Game of hot cockles by Fragonard c.1775/1780, the colors in this painting are intriguing and make for a summer palette guide.  

The Empire Style has always intrigued my attention, especially since visiting the Borghese Gardens in Rome. Seeing Paolina Borghese reclining [nude] in Canova’s depiction of Venus is breathtaking. The Classical world greatly influenced France and its new emperor, Napoleon.  This settee or couch by Hugh and John Finlay is Greek inspired from the 1780’s, and lastly The Square of Saint Mark’s, Venice by Canaletto c.1742/1744.

After several hours of perusing art, it was now time for a bit of Pan-Asian ambiance from Grace’s Mandarin. We ordered appetizers; shanghai chicken wings, salt & pepper wings with popcorn shrimp to share over glasses of Sauvignon blanc and martinis. Lunch was the Szechuan string beans with shrimp and the jumbo lump crab-meat fried rice. I even ordered a few items to take home for dinner to share with family, which by the way was the perfect end to an extraordinary Saturday!

Venture out safely,

Cherry Blossoms

Family and friends arose at 4:30 this morning to walk along the Title Basin to see a spring sunrise. It was cold on the Potomac at that hour, but did not stop our team from photographing “Cherry Blossoms“and the Washington Monument on the National Mall.

This is social distancing at an opportune time, while enjoying the beauty of the morning. Rising at this hour allows one to tap into artistic opportunities.

Photographs taken by Laurence L. Levin. 

Cherry Blossoms, Washington Monument,The National Mall

Cherry Blossoms, Washington Monument

Stay strong,

Weekend in Washington {DC}

IMG_4321{Saturday afternoon in front of the White House with a Brexit protest behind me}

There is something about being in the District of Columbia taking in a few sites, learning about an ancient Greek culture through an exhibit, enjoying a delicious meal or catching a show, all while not being considered a typical tourist.

The city is truly bustling, especially around the Mall with the construction of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, which officially opens this fall, streets are being repaired, and on every other corner there is a protest of some sort.

IMG_4306Joe’s Seafood Prime Steak & Stone Crab
750  15th Street NW, Washington 20005
This lavish two story space was a perfect reprieve after viewing the exquisite exhibit The Greeks: Agamemnon to Alexander the Great at the National Geographic Museum on 17th Street. This will be the only east coast venue of 500 priceless treasures many of which have never been outside of Greece that celebrate kings, poets, and philosophers. But, back to Joe’s on 15th for brunch, sipping a cocktail and enjoying American surf n’ turf fare was a great way to recap what was seen in the museum.

IMG_4273On Friday night with my BFF Quy, we attended a performance of the Saffron Dance troupe’s Casbah 2016. We saw women of all ages and sizes perform the Middle Eastern style of entertainment known as belly-dancing. Each part of their bodies were actively engaged along with hip movements that mesmerized the audience. The costumes were beautifully designed to showcase their fluid movements.

Well, I am off to pack for my upcoming trip this weekend to Italy and Greece. I have been to several galleries between Washington and New York over the last few months to be able to research and appreciate the antiquities of Greece and Italy.

Stay stylish,