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Showing posts from May, 2015

Detroit Institute of Arts

I met two girlfriends in the "D" last weekend for brunch and then two of us went on to the DIA new exhibit, Diego Rivera and Frido Kahlo in Detroit.  I had been looking forward to the exhibit since I did not know much about either of them.  I have always been fascinated by the mural in the DIA.  

The exhibit is broken into three parts: pre, during and post Detroit.  We are introduced into the inspirations for their art.  Rivera was inspired by traditional Mexico and the plight of the working class.  Kahlo had been in an accident in her late teens -- this accident inspired all her work going forward as she believed the miscarriage she had in Detroit was caused by the earlier accident.

One of the best parts of the exhibit was a deep dive into the Detroit Industry painting.  They highlighted the development of the art and the reasons behind the different panels within the art work.  I look at the art with new eyes now.  There were pieces of the mural that I had never noticed befo…

Neues Museum

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The second museum I visited on Museum Island was the Neues Museum.  It is just next door to the Pergamon museum.  It was really convenient to just hop next door and this was part of the museum ticket.  The ticket came with recordings in English (asked if I wanted English or Scottish).

The museum could easily take all day to visit, but they do highlight the key treasures in their collection on the map.  This is very handy!  The recordings were a bit long, but did seem to highlight key elements.

I went to see the Golden Hat and Nefertiti Bust.  How gorgeous!  They would not let you take photos of them.  The Nefertiti Bust was truly phenomenal -- tey still are not quite sure of the purpose of it.  They think it could have been used as a prototype sculpture.   They did have a replica of the Duomo door, which we have seen the real one!


Very cool museum -- I wish I had a bit more stamina to see the museum more fully!

Times visited: 1
Time in museum: 1 hr
Overall: A-

Altes Museum

My last stop in Berlin was Altes Museum before heading to the airport.  It seemed to complete the trio.

What a beautiful museum.  The outside was gorgeous and so iconic.  I did a pretty quick spin through this museum.  They had a number of Roman and Greek art, statues, and frescoes.  I really liked the second floor rotunda.  The artwork was themed around topics e.g. entertainment, the afterlife.  

Of the three museums I visited, I think this one was the least interesting to visit.  That being said, I might have, OD-ed on ancient civilizations that day.

Times visited: 1
Time in museum: <1 hr
Overall: B+

Berlin Wall Memorial

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On the first day in Berlin, I rented a bicycle to see the city.  It was also part of the recommended list I received from Simon.  

It is a bit outside the city, but well worth the trip.  It is over a path of the wall on the north side of the city.  It has a number of stops with recordings and descriptions of various aspects of life near the wall.  I had not realized how it developed over time as opposed to an insta-great thing in history.  It evolved just like anything else.  I cannot believe how they thought they could just split families like they did.  






They have built a look-out to see a simulation of what the wall looked like before it was taken down.





Times visited: 1
Time at memorial: 1.5 hrs
Overall: A-

Berlin Wall Memorial

Image
On the first day in Berlin, I rented a bicycle to see the city.  It was also part of the recommended list I received from Simon.  

It is a bit outside the city, but well worth the trip.  It is over a path of the wall on the north side of the city.  It has a number of stops with recordings and descriptions of various aspects of life near the wall.  I had not realized how it developed over time as opposed to an insta-great thing in history.  It evolved just like anything else.  I cannot believe how they thought they could just split families like they did.  






They have built a look-out to see a simulation of what the wall looked like before it was taken down.





Times visited: 1
Time at memorial: 1.5 hrs
Overall: A-

Berlin Wall Memorial

Image
On the first day in Berlin, I rented a bicycle to see the city.  It was also part of the recommended list I received from Simon.  

It is a bit outside the city, but well worth the trip.  It is over a path of the wall on the north side of the city.  It has a number of stops with recordings and descriptions of various aspects of life near the wall.  I had not realized how it developed over time as opposed to an insta-great thing in history.  It evolved just like anything else.  I cannot believe how they thought they could just split families like they did.  






They have built a look-out to see a simulation of what the wall looked like before it was taken down.





Times visited: 1
Time at memorial: 1.5 hrs
Overall: A-

Pergamon Museum

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I was in Germany for training almost a month ago.  I added a few extra days on coming in the weekend before.  I decided to check out Berlin!  One of my former bosses was from Berlin and highly recommended coming to the Pergamon.  I understand why!  What a cool museum!

It is on Museum Island, which is a concentration of a number of the museums within Berlin.  They had a group ticket, which was a great deal allowing you to get into most of the museums for a great price (particularly since I used my student ID)!

This museum has full size (or really large) monuments from ancient civilizations.  The scale was pretty fantastic.  I spent an hour in the museum, which seemed fairly on track with most other visitors.

I took some pictures of some of my favorites:







I mean -- check out how big the columns are -- that was actually a market.  Curious to see how much of it was real versus imitation.

My biggest complaint is that they would not take my backpack in the coat check; I needed to get a euro to us…

Dachau Concentration Camp

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I was in Munich in the spring of 2012 and had wanted to go to Dachau if I had just been there one more day.  My paternal grandfather was part of one of the first Army troops to reach it at the end of the World War II.  He never spoke about being in the military and I thought this would be an important way to remember the service he provided.  




I did not take a tour to the site, but rather went by myself with the public transportation -- first with the train and then hopping onto a bus.  

It looked a lot like I had imagined it -- barren, stark, extremely orderly.  The train truly had been routed to the front door.  


They had leveled a number of the barracks, but left two so you could get a sense of scale.  By the end of the war, the camp which had been built for 6,000 people, held over 30,000.  The barracks were overcrowded and food was in scarce supply.  
Four different religious memorials have been built within the site: Russian Orthodox, Christian, Catholic and Jewish.  I was surprised …