Sometimes, I just need a good dose of art. And living in NYC, I have no excuse not to get one at a major cultural institution known round the world. A couple of Saturday's ago, I went to the Guggenheim for one of their Pay-As-You-Wish evenings. If you don't know about this promotion, you should definitely check it out. Every week, the museum, known for it's modern and contemporary collection and special exhibits and housed in one of the most unique Frank Lloyd Wright buildings I've ever seen, opens it's doors to the public from 5:45-7:45 p.m. While you still have to wait in line and get a ticket, you can hand the cashier anything from a $20, to a nickel, to zero and everything in between. Even on a cold, rainy evening, the museum drew quite the crowd, but as soon as the clock hit 5:45, the line practically dissolved. (Note to self: don't get there early next time!).
I handed the cashier $2, checked my coat (the Guggenheim is one of those check it or wear it institutions when it comes to coats) and headed up the spiral ramp. One thing I love about this museum is that you can completely go through everything in two hours and feel content and not rushed. The architecture of the building is also very innovative for an art museum.
The current exhibition is called "The Great Upheaval: Modern Art from the Guggenheim Collection 1910-1918." It is arranged chronologically and as you go up the ramp, each spiral encompasses another year. Prominent artists in this exhibit are mostly from Germany, Austria, France and Italy and include Franz Mark, Vasily Kandinsky (one of my favorites), Pablo Picasso, Henri Rousseau, Umberto Boccioni, among others. With more than 100 works spread throughout the exhibit, it provides an interactive and comparative view of the art world around the time preceding and during World War I.
A side exhibit, if you hadn't seen enough of him yet, "Kandinski at the Bauhaus, 1922-1933," showcases many of the artists geometrical and flat planed paintings from the time period in which he taught at the renowned German school of art.