Thursday, April 10, 2008

Snarque de la Louvre...

So on my visit to the Atlanta travelling Louvre exhibit, I stopped for a few minutes in front of the yew, silver, and silver gilt wash stand that Bienne made for Bonaparte, and a lovely example of the Corsican's taste it is.

Pretty cool to think that the first modern mass market tyrant washed his face in this thing for years, and it stood beside him while he died on St. Helena. Here's a man who killed millions, and flattered himself that he owned it- yet he is dust and the wash stand still lives.

Aaaaanyway, I noticed that there's a presentation inscription around the bulge of the ewer. I could just read it, and my French is barely equal to puzzling out, "Given to the Emperor by his Sister Caroline..."

At which point I said,

"MY sister Caroline never gave ME a yew wood, silver, and silver gilt washstand..."

At which point my Museum visit sharer T said,

"Well, did YOU ever give HER the Grand Duchy of Berg and Cleves?"

I had my revenge later. There was an exhibition on Georgia O'Keeffe and the Women of the Stieglitz Circle, art which leaves me unmoved. So strolling through, there was a section of pictures that were very crude, including one of a house and yard.

T: "That looks like an eight year old did it."

(I looked at the card, which said "Georgia Englehard, 1906-1990, Watercolor, 1916." Quick mental math...)

S: "Give her a break, she was only ten."

T: "It looks like it should be on a refrigerator."

S: "It was 1916, they didn't have refrigerators in houses. And magnets won't stick to a wood icebox. Don't you know anything about art?"

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