National Art Gallery of Canada, Ottawa
Favorite thing: Take in a show at the Canadian National Arts Center. Once, when we were there, we went to a lovely Bel Canto Café upstairs and enjoyed some delightful operatic entertainment while enjoying a light midnight supper.
I spent the day roaming around various Ottawa culture hotspots with Benoit. We went to a nice little gelato place for lunch, and then we spent umpteen hours in the National Art Gallery. I got to see the fabulous Gustav Klimt exhibit. I had no idea some of those paintings were that big. For some reason, I had envisioned them as being much smaller, but it was quite refreshing to see gorgeous gilt nouveau art taller than me. I also got to see a piece attributed to Hieronymous Bosch (I sure hope I spelled that right). It had the usual egg with legs, frog-drawn siege tanks, naked women, and so on.
I was sorely tempted to buy a Klimt umbrella. It was gorgeous, and only $20, but I really don't need a new umbrella. My leopard print one is just fine and dandy. The architecture of the Gallery is gorgeous, in a spacious, concrete, ultramodern way. The natural lighting is ingenius, and even if there was no art in the gallery, it would still be worth visiting. The floors are mostly oak, but there are some carpeted bits, like in the Italian masters drawing room. I saw sketches by Caravaggio, paintings by Picasso (it sucked), Salvador Dali (the ones in Fredericton are much more impressive), and by a modern German artist whose name escapes me and whose art amazed me. He did two enormous paintings in particular which I really liked. One is set in a steel forge, and most of the very muscular caucasian men are naked or just wearing jackboots, aprons, and jockstraps. A black man and a gorgeous brown man stand at the forefront. They are the only two who are properly clothed.
The other painting has a whole gaggle of nekkid virile skinheads setting around in a barn (I think). It was based off a famous painting whose name and artist both escape me at the moment. Jeesh. I feel pretty pointless right now. Maybe I'll remember the details later on.
Fondest memory: This building looks just great! We haven't been inside though as we are not that much into art. But thought it is a very nice building.