Thursday, August 31, 2017

Architectural Features Inside

The unique architectural design of the ASU Art Museum wasn't just limited to the outside.  The inside space also had some sleek, modern features like this stairway and textured ceiling and sky light.

As I left the museum, I had to take one more shot that took in some of the interesting patterns mixed with the landscaping full of palm trees and succulents.  If you admire architecture as much as I do, it's well worth a visit.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Contemporary Art

The ASU Art Museum is not a huge and sprawling museum so it is quite accessible and can be explored in an hour or two.  I found some very inspiring and thought provoking works inside.  This piece is called "The House That Roxanne Built" by Roxanne Swentzell of Santa Fe New Mexico.  It definitely has a Native American feel to it.

This piece didn't catch my eye at first but, upon closer inspection, I found it fascinating.  It's called "The Re-Arrangement" by Kim Dickey of Boulder Colorado.

You have to get in really close to see the faces, eyes and beaks peeking out from various locations.  You can actually see a bird's beak popping out on the right side in the full view of it above and in this photo we have what looks like a dog peeking out.

On the other side, another animal is hiding in the among to leaves and petals.  It's one of those pieces that you really have to look at to see what it's all about.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

ASU Art Museum

Several years ago I posted a photo of the front of the ASU Art Museum.  At the time, I had just made a quick stop to get the photo so I hadn't completely examined the entire facility.  I greatly admire its unique architectural design so I decided last Saturday that I should explore the place a little more.  The top photo was taken behind the front of the building (see the link above) in a space that forms a little amphitheater space.

You can see the elevated seating to the right in this photo and looming over the top is the beautiful and round ASU Music Building which sits next door to the art museum.

Getting to the amphitheater area means walking through some interesting passages with abstract walls on each side.

The architecture of the building creates all kinds of lines and interesting color combinations.

Tomorrow I'll show you some things I found inside the museum.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Find Your Direction

I've be wanting to photograph this mural for a long time but never got around to doing it.  It's on the side of a building that used to house "Fast Signs" a printing business.  The sad thing is that parts of this mural have been painted over.  Above the word "Direction" it used to say "Find Your". There also used to be a lot of artistic lines flowing through the mural.  You can see a photo of how it used to look here.  I've always found its underwater and sea creature theme a bit unusual for a desert city like Phoenix.  It makes it stand out.  The artists are Isaac Caruso and Lalo Cota.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Frida and Self-Portraiture

Frida Kahlo created 150 works and 65 of them were self-portraits.  All of the self-portraits in this collection were part of the Gelman collection that I mentioned yesterday and they were among Natasha Gelman's most prized possessions.

This one was painted in 1943 and shows Frida with monkeys who embrace her affectionately.

This one was painted in 1941 showing Frida with her hair up and wearing a gold and red dress.

This one was painted in 1937 and is called "Me and My Doll".

I'm so glad I returned to this exhibit before it leaves at the end of August.  I'm equally happy that it was quiet enough to let me read all the information.

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  I'm visiting a place with spectacular views and art everywhere.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Frida & Diego, a Return Visit

Yesterday I went back to the Heard Museum and re-visited the Frida and Diego Exhibit.  I'm so glad I did.  It was a lot less busy than when I first visited and I could leisurely read all the information and take my time enjoying the paintings.  I also learned some new things.  This painting by Rivera is of Natasha Gelman and was commissioned by her husband Jacques.  The painting depicts her reclining on a sofa in an elegant white dress with the slit in the front that seems to mimic the lilies that are behind her.

Frieda's portrait of the same woman was much more sedate with a more stern look that doesn't give off the alluring feeling that Diego's portrait does.

Also in the exhibit was this portrait of Jacques Gelman by Angel Zarraga.  Gelman was a wealthy film maker in Mexico who was born in Russia.  He and his wife were among a small group of collectors who supported modern Mexican artists by commissioning works and purchasing other works directly from the artist's studios.  When they passed away (Jacques in 1986 and Natasha in 1998) they left behind what is considered to be one of the finest collections of Mexican art.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Something Pretty..

I decided I wanted to post something pretty today to start off the weekend.  It's been such a busy week full of more irritating and frustrating news.  This photo is from The Desert Botanical Garden but, I took it back in April.  I love the color of these flowers that are sometimes called Bachelor's Buttons.  They put a smile on my face and I hope they do the same for you.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

At the Very Top

I found one more photo of the very top of the Luhrs Tower that I took on a cloudy day a couple of years ago.  Since it was taken from some distance away, it does a better job of showing all those extra details around the top floors of the building.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

The Lobby

The lobby of the Luhrs Tower is quite small compared to most modern skyscrapers.  There are two elevators and a marble staircase on one side.  The other side opens to an arcade for businesses that served the people working in the tower, like newspaper and snack shops.

I loved the elaborate letter box in between the two elevator doors.

Above the elevator door is a dial to let you know where the elevator car was located.

And, lighting the lobby was this beautiful light fixture.
What a grand old building.  

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The City's First Skyscraper

The Luhrs Tower in downtown Phoenix is the city's very first high-rise building.  It was built by George H.N. Luhrs, a Phoenix businessman and it was dedicated on April 1, 1924.

The 14-story building cost $553,000. to build.

It's a neoclassical and art deco style with marble trim and southwestern  influences.  When it was built, the 10th floor was a penthouse with views of the city in all directions.

For decades, it was the tallest building in the southwest.  It has recently gone through a thorough restoration with over ten million dollars in capital improvements.  It still offers office space to many businesses and with the light rail running right past the front door, it's an ideal location for commuters.

I love all that detailed trim in a turquoise color that runs from the ground all the way to the very top.

Tomorrow I'll take you inside the lobby for a look at the detailing there.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Walk of Fame

In yesterday's post, I featured the old San Carlos Hotel in downtown Phoenix and I mentioned that a lot of famous people have stayed there.

On the sidewalk in front of the hotel, we have our very own "walk of fame" with gold stars naming some of those famous guests.  Here's Spencer Tracy.

Carol Lombard

Mae West.

And, Jean Harlow.
There are more but, these are the only one's I photographed.  For a while, Phoenix became a little desert escape from the busy life in Hollywood.  Many stars came over here for a little relaxation and according to legend a few came for a little assignation or two.  If those walls could talk!  

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Pointing the Camera at an Angle

On Friday I had the camera pointing up and Saturday I had the camera pointing down so today I'm tilting it for a few photos.  This one of an office building I've had on the site before.  I like those stripes and decided to see if I could get them going in a different direction.

Across the street from the top photo is the Camby Hotel.  This used to be the Ritz Carlton but has changed to this new place, a Marriott Boutique Hotel.

Sorry for the spots and glare on this shot.  I took it through the windshield early on Saturday.  More and more I'm seeing these full size ads covering the sides of some of the downtown's sleek, glass skyscrapers.

This last one is the old San Carlos Hotel on a corner in downtown.  This hotel has been around for a very long time and has had some very famous guests in the past.  Marilyn Monroe and Clark Gable are just a few of the notables who've stayed here.

I have a new post on Sharon's Sojourns today.  I'm visiting a National Monument with a funny name.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Pointing the Camera Down

It is way too early here in the southwest to see falling leaves.  This one didn't get the message.  It certainly has developed a "fall" color!

When I saw this shadow in a parking lot, I thought maybe Mickey Mouse was behind me.  Micky.... you've lost way too much weight.

I waited patiently while it crossed the path.  Even thought it's a rather harmless Kingsnake, I gave it all the room it needed to move along away from me.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Pointing the Camera Up

Sometimes when I walk around downtown Phoenix, I point my camera toward the sky and capture the tops of some of the high-rise buildings.  This one isn't very tall but, it's been downtown for a very long time.

This one with the balconies is much newer and is an apartment building.  It was built to be condos but, when it opened in the middle of the housing crisis there wasn't a market for new houses so it switched to apartment living.

These two of course, are your standard office buildings.  It's fun to look up at the tops of these buildings.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Avoiding the Train Wreck

I've been trying to avoid the train wreck that is going on here in the good old U. S. of A.  It's pretty much impossible at the moment.  So rather than lamenting the lack of moral fiber of the current occupant of the white house, I thought I'd check out my photos from my last visit to the Desert Botanical Garden and sooth my outraged mind with the profound beauty of mother nature.

Just keeping up with the breaking news is exhausting.  I'll stop for just a moment and smell the flowers and listen to the birds.  I'm sure it will do wonders for my disposition.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Water Lilies

I'm sneaking in a couple of photos from California here because I just thought these water lilies were pretty  spectacular.

We don't see water lilies in Arizona very often.  I'm sure it's too hot for them to do well so, when I see such pretty ones I just can't resist a few shots.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Monsoon Clouds from Above

When I was flying in Sunday evening I got to see some of those big monsoon clouds from up above.

These clouds actually look quite friendly.  When we landed, the skies were blue so my only opportunity to see them was this view as they floated off to the west.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Southwestern Expressions

Old Town Scottsdale is full of shops designed to lure in the tourists as they stroll the streets.  Part of the charm is all the southwestern touches in and around the area.  Like this sun-bleached skull hanging high up on a gallery wall.

Or this line up of Kachina dolls peeking out of a window that is also high up at that very same gallery.

And, this little niche with some potted plants makes another appealing distraction.