There is also a fascinating special exhibit on the plans for the High Line, a new project to turn a defunct elevated railway bed on Manhattan’s far west side into a series of gardens and paths.
There were lots of families at the museum, and it was very clear to me that the children were having a very good time. There is enough variety here to capture folks of all ages.
At one and the same time, this museum captures our imagination and stretches our limits of understanding, creating pleasure to the eye, and tension in the mind. Not a bad thing for a Sunday afternoon.
What I’m trying to say, I guess, is that there is a lot to learn at the museum. There is an extensive collection of photographs, including a beauty from 1921, by Eugene Atget, called “Saint-Cloud.” This was the photographer who, according to Walker Evans, “had mastered photography’s capacity to transform what it describes – to turn fact into metaphor.”
The new sculpture garden is gorgeous, and especially fun filled as it was with happy New Yorkers on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Crowds of sun-starved visitors re-positioned their chairs in smaller and smaller spaces as the sun moved and finally disappeared.
While it is true that MOMA is the single most expensive museum in NYC, and it is also true that David Rockefeller just gave the museum several hundred million dollars, and that they probably don’t need my money at all, it was worth the price of admission.
The museum shop is chockablock with all sorts of goodies – but we managed to get out with only a couple of postcards – and a couple of cleverly designed gift objects.
There are three different restaurants in the museum. Café 2 is a casual one, with no reservations, but in which the line moves fast, so I was told. Terrace 5 is a café with a view of the sculpture garden. It was in the restaurant called “The Modern” where we had lunch, a special treat for our anniversary. It is at the same level as the sculpture garden which we could view while we ate. It was difficult to stop people watching, however, and checking out what others were eating. At lunch, the menu is of small portions, a bow to the “grazing” habits of restaurant-goers these days. I had an herb salad with bacon-wrapped goat cheese, followed by tagliatelle with morels, spring peas and onions, and pancetta. As a special anniversary treat I allowed myself a chocolate tart with pistachio ice cream. The saving grace was that all the portions were small. Jim enjoyed his wild mushroom soup and diver scallops, but most men might like larger portions. He made up for any short fall with some beignets topped with maple ice cream, caramel and citrus-mango marmalade.
We like to drive in to New York City on a Sunday morning, when the traffic is usually very light, and the city is much more user-friendly. I remember when I lived in the city after I graduated from college, that we used to walk down the middle of the streets on the Upper East Side on Sundays. It’s not quite that quiet now, but still easy to get around. Even parking was better, what with the discount you get if you park in one of the nearby garages.