Monday, January 9, 2012

Norton Simon Museum Revisited

The last time we were at this art museum the weather was rainy and cold. Consequently at that time I did not take any pictures. The outside entrance to this museum has a sculpture by August Rodin called "The Burghers of Calais", which is pictured above. We did not have any plans to return to this art gallery in Pasadena. However, Pastor Hanson at Life House church, in his sermon Sunday, referred to a painting of Joseph which he had seen there. He commented that usually in nativity scenes Joseph, the father of Jesus, is often depicted in the shadows or not at all.. We easily found the painting in the museum among its collection of early Baroque paintings. The 17th century painting done by the artist Baciccio shows Joseph, by himself, holding Jesus very reverently with a total look of awe on his face. As Pastor Hanson saw it, it is as if he is viewing his son with joy in recognition of the fact that he is holding his Savior. The painting is very appropriate for the Epiphany season. There was another artist I looked for while at the museum. I recently read a historical fiction novel, With Violets, by Elizabeth Robards on the artist Edouard Manet. He was an Impressionist painter of the late 19th century. I found several of his paintings in the gallery, including a painting which he did of his wife. Interestingly enough, she looks to be quite prettier than Robard's description of her in the book!  Since we had already visited the museum two years ago, we visited the sculpture garden first.  The small pond in the middle of the garden adds a lot to it its beauty as it reflects the trees and sculptures surrounding it.
 The garden is replete with a large variety of plants. A number of the trees were gifted to the museum by the naturalist John Muir. Pictured below is a foxtail agave plant.

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