Thursday, January 19, 2017

Tate Modern and Mahler

Barbican Center, London Symphony Orchestra

We had a day filled with art and music.  We started at the Tate Modern which reminded me of the Boston ICA in the manner that they both offer wide glassed in spaces that overlook major bodies of water.  The Tate sits alongside the Thames and has a cafe on the 10th floor that offers a grand view of the river and the city's skyline.  To get there, we disembarked at the Blackfriars bus stop, which is the area Shakespeare's company performed indoor plays when not at the Globe. Our walk to the Tate was along the Thames in bright sunshine.

The Tate Modern was confusing to us.  It is divided into two houses, the purpose of which we still don't understand.  The space is massive and very industrial but with choppy small galleries.  What we did enjoy were some Picasso pieces, especially the Three Dancers and a gallery focused on the studio work of the artist.  This room had many portrait and self portrait pieces which were in a realistic style yet not photo realism.  Here is one example.

This evening we went to the Barbican Center to hear the London Symphony Orchestra.  The Barbican  Center is the largest multi-functional performing arts venue of its kind in Europe.  It hosts classical and contemporary music, theater (including the Royal Shakespeare Co.) film screenings and art exhibitions. Simon Rattle was in from Berlin conducting Mahler's 6th Symphony.  I think Mahler attempted to use every item that could make a sound in this piece.  It was very dramatic, bold, colorful and symphonic to the nth degree.

We purchased an Oyster card to use on busses and trains.  It is the London version of Boston's Charlie card.  When we entered the tube station and found our oyster card empty, we couldn't understand how we had used 20 pounds apiece worth of travel in 2 days.  We discovered that we were charged the maximum amount each trip because we were not using the card to exit.  Live and learn.
The day's pictures are at flickrUIKeyInputUpArrow and .