Between sailing races last week, I took a few detours in to London to visit art museums. Last Friday, I decided to concentrate on the National Gallery of Art…
with a bright blue cock right out front…
and The National Portrait Gallery.
The two world-class museums are snuggled up next to each other off Trafalgar Square right in the center of London, and offer more art than any one person can take in a day. But I tried.
I spent my first hour at the National Portrait Gallery.
It is a favorite of mine. Intimate in its size and varied in its content, it has new exhibits all the time and old favorites that I like to re-visit.
There was a special exhibition of drawings by Bob Dylan, never having been shown before. I thought of how he may have sketched all these years just for the joy of it never caring if anyone else saw them. He was an idol of mine in my youth, and this scenario suited my image of him.
I ended my visit in the upstairs galleries featuring historic paintings. This one of Queen Elizabeth I was one of my favorites. And again, as always in London, the sense of history is so overwhelming.
The museum is rich and varied. And although there were restrictions on what I could and could not photograph, the images linger in my mind.
The National Gallery of Art, attached yet separate did not allow any photography at all inside. But the collection was more familiar, so hardly necessary to recall the great art. Seeing the Constables, Monets and Van Goghs was like visiting old friends.
All in all a very pleasant day. As I slowly strolled across the city to return to Liverpool Street Station to catch my train back to rural England, I was felling very lucky indeed to be allowed access to all that London has to offer.