Wednesday, 2 July 2008

More Culture....

Today Jack and I really earned our dose of culture. We walked (well I walked he sat and watched the world go by) to the Scottish National Gallery Of Modern Art and the Dean Gallery which are luckily just across the road from each other. Lucky because it took me over an hour to walk there (on an unusually balmy day) and I wouldn't have fancied another hike (though we did have to get back to our apartment).
I'd read that there were big grounds so I thought that would be splendid for Jack to run around but part was devoted to this big sculpture made out of lawn and water which was very nice but also probably too tempting for Jack(puddles..big puddles). He explored the paths, benches and some sculptures but seemed more interested in the lights and a tractor lawn mower thing (from a safe distance).
I had gone to these galleries in search of some works by the Scottish colourists or more specifically Samuel Peploe. I had read about Peploe in you guessed it, 44 Scotland Street when Pat starts work in a gallery and thinks she has discovered a previously undiscovered Peploe, which is then referred to as a Peploe?. With the help of a guard I manged to find a corridor full of works by Peploe and the other colourists, Fergusson and Cadell. I was pleased to find the Peploe but didn't like them as much as Fergusson's paintings. The guard assured me that the Peploe's grow on you but he would say that standing in that corridor for hours at a time.
I think they looked similar to a Margaret Preston work from the same period (that's hers on the right).
The galleries here are so impressive. As well as very detailed labels next to the works, they have folders with this information in large type and they also have a relevant book hanging around just waiting to be read. And most of the staff are very helpful and friendly in spite of the scratchy tartan pants.
Unfortunately the main rooms downstairs were being rehung so I missed seeing some works (possibly Damien Hurst's sheep and a Hockney) but I did see some prints by an artist called Ian Hamilton Finlay that were very nautically naughty and clever.
Finishing at that gallery we headed across the road to the Dean Gallery, taking care to cross at the crossing as the guard had told us. This is the Dean gallery and I know it looks the same but I promise it is an entirely different place. It has lots of dadaist and surrealist works and Jack found these disturbing and frankly who can blame him. So we had a quick looksee but decided to head off. Duchamp is not really my thing. All those moulded labias made out of dental plastic...ugh.
I headed back in the right direction then made a wrong turn or three and ended up somewhere unexpected. This happened a couple of times until Jack fell asleep and I decided to have some Dim Sum (yum cha). I've never had dim sum alone before. I guess if I was to be really honest I'd say that it would be fantastic because I wouldn't have to share my favourite dumplings (har gau and slippy sloppy noodles which I now know are called Cheung Fun). But I think the good thing about going to yum cha with other people, besides the company because Jack was certainly letting the team down conversationally, is that you have to share so you can try more things. I limited myself to the Har Gau (prawn dumplings), char sieu cheung fun (BBQ pork rice noodles) and the Wor tip or as they are known potsticker dumplings. And a pot of Jasmine tea.
Replete from my dumpling feast, I had the strength to make the trip back and this time I made sure I was heading in the right direction.

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