If you knew you would only have a few hours in our nation’s capital, how would you spend them? I knew immediately what I wanted to do when I had that opportunity recently. I lived in the D.C. area in the late 80s and I visited Washington D.C. several times during those years. The National Gallery of Art left such an impression on me that I knew I wanted to come back while I was in northern Virginia. I was taking care of my elderly mother while my sister and her husband took a well deserved vacation. They are Mom’s usual care givers. My mother goes to an adult day care center during the day so I thought it would be best to keep her routine and that gave me the chance to have some fun while I was there. And it was a great day! Even if it was just a few hours.
I had plans to meet Cathy of nomad, interrupted at the museum between 10:00 and 10:30. We met in the blogosphere and she had said to let her know if I was ever in town. Traffic was awful that morning which caused me to be further delayed. I decided to park at the new Reston metro station because it was close to the day care center, about 10-15 minutes away. The parking level I entered was full so I headed down to the next level and found many open spots but they all had this reserved sign above them: Reserved from 2 a.m. to 10 a.m. By this time it was 9:57 so I parked and waited and called my friend to let her know I wasn’t even on the train yet :( It was another 5 minutes to get to the train and about 8 more minutes before the train left. I did finally arrive in D.C.!!! I called Cathy when I entered the museum and she showed up minutes later. Finally we meet!
I remember that this gallery had a nice French impressionism collection and I wanted to be sure to see at least these paintings. It’s also fun to go to a museum with others because you get their perspective and learn new things. Cathy picked up a brochure of some special items in the museum, and one was near the 7th Street entrance where I came in, Degas’s Little Dancer sculpture. I love Degas so this was a treat I wasn’t expecting. Bonus! There were two that looked nearly identical in stance, one was made of plaster, the other of bronze. Click on an image to see a larger view.
Other fabulous works of art that we saw:
I loved all the Monet that I saw but these were my particular favorites. Notice the artist at work making a copy of one of them.
I loved the placement of this Whistler painting:
Other beautiful paintings in the French Impressionism section:
Other scenes from the museum:
The last two paintings are ones we stumbled upon as we were leaving to go find lunch. They are by Goya, one of my favorite Spanish artists.
We had a fabulous lunch at Oyamel Cocina Mexicana just a couple of blocks from the museum. Check out my post at the link about that experience! After lunch it was about time for me to head back to take care of Mom. It was a fun way to spend a few hours in D.C. and it was great to meet another blogger and world traveler there. Wonderful art, food and company. You really can’t go wrong with that combination. I highly recommend this museum for art lovers. There is something for everyone here.