"Paintings have a life of their own that derives from the painter's soul." Vincent Van Gogh

Thursday, January 14, 2016

A Vacation to Begin the New Year!

My husband and I decided to treat ourselves to a quick but rather indulgent vacation to begin 2016. We flew to Los Angeles to see my sister and stayed in the rather grand Century City Hyatt. Here is what the lobby looked like the evening of our arrival:



That night we attended a hockey game at the Staples Center. I had never been there before and it certainly is impressive. We saw the LA Kings play the Toronto Maple Leafs - and I think I was one of only  a handful of Toronto fans in the entire stadium. Having lived in Toronto many years ago I learned to love ice hockey!

Next we drove to Santa Anita Racetrack. It was a cold and gloomy day but the rain held off and we enjoyed seeing the magnificent thoroughbreds up close and photographing them in action. Serendipitously, California Chrome ( the horse that won 2 of the 3 Triple Crown Races in 2014) was racing that day and Penny Chenery (the owner of Secretariat) was there to receive a special award. It really was a fun day! A few photos:


California Chrome



Penny Chenery accepting her award. Bob Baffert, the famous horse trainer, is the gentleman with the shock of white hair.

Perhaps there is a future painting among the many photos that I look!

The next day found us at the Getty Museum. I had never been there before and marveled at the electric tram that swept us gently up the mountain and at the cluster of  modern buildings that house the art. For some reason I had expected the entire place to look like an Italian villa and was very surprised to be proven so wrong.

Entrance to the Getty Museum / Los Angeles, CA

Some highlights from the collection:

Early Picasso - I LOVE this portrait! Thick and yummy paint!

The incomparable Sargent

Degas! And my personal favorite in the entire museum!

The Impressionist Gallery - Renoir, Van Gogh's Irises and Cezanne in this photo!
 
Punchinello being Helped to a Chair by Tiepolo / brown ink and wash on paper 

Old Masters Gallery

Magnificent Nativity from 1400,s by Fabriano

Head of Christ by Allegri

After overwhelming my senses with all this beautiful art, it was off to the airport to catch a plane to Las Vegas where we stayed in the Mirage Hotel - the room was very large with big windows overlooking the Strip. Photos of our view at night and in the morning:



We spent the day wandering around the hotels and shopping in the Caesar's Forum Mall as neither my husband or I are interested in gambling. It is a wonderland there and was an experience that was almost surreal in nature.

Gold and Silver horse in the Bellagio Lobby

Shoes from Fendi that I absolutely covet!

Henri Bendel storefront

The Caesar's Forum Mall entrance with Roman statue and Chinese dragon!

Pegasus and me.

We came across a small art gallery that was exhibiting a serious Picasso show - 42 works of art - all Picasso - from a private collection. No photos were allowed but it was well worth seeing. I can't even begin to imagine a single person owning all those works by Picasso! Wow!

Our last event was the real reason we traveled to Las Vegas - to see the Cirque du Soleil show - The Beatles Love!


It was fantastic - so creative and unique - quite a feast for all the senses. And the music! The music - it was heavenly!

Back home safe and sound now - and I surely need a week to recover! Hope every one else is having a great and auspicious beginning to 2016! It promises to be a wonderful year!

20 comments:

  1. Oh BOY! Great timing to go off and enjoy yourselves. Thanks for taking us along - especially the visit to the Getty Center.
    It is the other other one -the Getty Villa. is what you were expecting . Obviously you picked the right one so you could see your fav painting. If I have one painting that gives me goosebumps then I am a very happy camper!
    Are you back to painting? Cant wait to see new work, Susan.
    Happy New Year!

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    1. You are right, Julie - I was thinking of the Getty Villa! I don't know how I forgot about that! Perhaps I will visit there next time I am in LA!
      I am trying my best to get back to the easel - soon, Julie. Soon!

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  2. Hi Susan.
    What a wonderful break you must have had. And expensive. I gather you have taken plenty of photos of the Horses. I hope that you will paint some of them. Looking forward to seeing your next painting. All the best to you Susan.
    Vic.

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    1. LOL - yes, expensive and exhausting. Vic, I took so many photos that it took me most of one day to download and save them. I will have to go back and look through them to see if something catches my eye as a painting subject!

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  3. What a wonderful start for the year. I wish such experience will repeat and not only once, as the source for inspiration and joy. Great photos. The lady near Pegasus is so sophisticated.

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    1. Thank you , Irina - it was a memorable trip and lacked for nothing. Sports, family, music, magnificent horses and ART!

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  4. What an adventure! Some mind blowing images posted here, Susan - thanks for sharing. Plenty of reference material to keep you (and us) going for a while, especially the horses.

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    1. Yes - lots of reference material! I was lucky enough to get close to the track and the paddock so got some good shots!

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  5. Wow - it looks fabulous! And lovely photo's too! No doubt you have found inspiration in some of those horsey ones for a few paintings? Can't wait to see what you do next! :0)

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    1. Horses are on the back burner for a while but when I am ready for them, I have some great photos to sort through for inspiration!

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  6. Prachtige foto's Susan, bedankt dat we mee mogen genieten !
    Hopelijk heb je weer heel veel inspiratie opgedaan....
    groetjes van Simonne

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    1. It certainly was an inspiring trip -especially seeing all the art at the Getty. That Degas stole my heart!

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  7. A wonderful post, thank you for this virtual tour of your journey , took me back to when I visited Los Angeles and Las Vegas many years ago.

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    1. They are both such vibrant places - but so different. I think we could have stayed a month in each place and never run out of things to do and see!

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  8. Thanks for sharing these wonderful photos, Susan! What a great start of the year!

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    1. Yes, it was indeed a trip to remember!

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  9. What an absolutely PERFECT vacation!!! Glorious art, HORSES, gorgeous shoes [I have a shoe fetish, too]. So glad you got away on such a wonderful trip. I can see some paintings coming from this.
    Kathryn

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  10. Très belle exposition que tu as pu admirer au Getty Museum / Los Angeles, joli travel !
    Cath.

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  11. Très belle exposition que tu as pu admirer au Getty Museum / Los Angeles, joli travel !
    Cath.

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Your comments are welcome and brighten my day!