Houston is one of my new favorite cities. The people are friendly, the weather perfect nine months of year, the outdoors are easily accessible and they have amazing ART. I was able to spend a few hours at the Menil Collection which stole my heart. The main building designed by Renzo Piano seamlessly integrates indoor and outdoor spaces with interior gardens and canopies that stretch beyond the roofline. Piano beautifully "suffuses" the natural light into the interior spaces through ceiling louvers. The collection is lovely, especially a gorgeous royal blue & green Rothko.
Dario Robleto's exhibition, The Boundary of Life is Quietly Crossed, connects the invention of the artificial heart with man's exploration of space. Scientists and astronauts postulated- should they encounter life in outer space, how would they communicate? The heartbeat was thought to be the universal language. I was most intrigued with the sound of the human heart beat and the first recordings of the human pulse. It was captivating to hear the sound of the human heart pulsing after various emotional stimuli. Something so pure and simple, so integral to every living being. I know what I want for Christmas- a stethoscope!!
I could have stayed for hours in the Twombly gallery. The architecture, also designed by Piano, was in my opinion pure perfection- no base board, no crown molding, no adornment, just simple elegance. Soft ivory cloth tarps draped the ceiling to diffuse the natural light. I found it meditative and calming to my soul. There is something about good art, set in the right context that could make my heart weep and never want to leave.
The Dan Flavin gallery is also meditative but in a totally different way. Colorful and dark with an industrial twist. Lastly the Rothko chapel, a bit somber for my mood but an important part of the collection and history. I left playing yet again with the idea of color and how it moves our soul in different ways from Rothko's paintings, to Flavin's neon lights, to Piano's ability to diffuse natural light in space. One's experience is further affected by the integration of art and architecture. The Menil Collection champions this notion.