I had the distinct pleasure of making it to the Huntington Library and Museum this weekend in LA. This amazing place will make you distinctly aware of what a little money can buy you. The library is home to countless priceless works including the Dead Sea Scrolls. The art collection is top notch, and the gardens are the best I’ve seen in the US. The place is huge, and it would take a full day to see it all. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to commit a full day, so instead I was relegated to only seeing the art collection.

There was a temporary show on of works of American art of the turn of the century. It was really nice because it included illustration as well, so it really was inclusive of all kinds of picture making being created in America at the time. “Although the late 19th century is identified artistically with leisure-laden landscapes, abundant still lifes, and class-conscious portraiture, American artists also turned their attention to the financial and occupational turmoil that marked the Reconstruction, Gilded Age, and early Progressive eras.” This one piece stole the show however.

In the Huntington’s former home they displayed all the European art that they had collected. The nice thing about this museum is that they don’t display the pieces to high, but rather at eye level so you can really examine them. Quite a few great pieces, but one of significance to me was a Rembrandt…big surprise there. It wasn’t the greatest painting he’d ever done and it is supposed to be a collaborative work with a pupil, but it was great to see the “tricks” that he employed to bring about the 3-d quality of his paintings.

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