Go to the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia if you have any interest in art.  You will wish you could be Albert Barnes with a pocket full of money in Paris and the art dealers of Paris at your disposal and will be glad that despite his will, the collection was moved to Philadelphia where it’s much easier to visit.

The Barnes Foundation is not a museum. You are viewing a private collection arranged  in “ensembles.”  These ensembles are not based on principles of art history [Renaissance, Impressionist etc.]Ensembles are “symmetrical wall compositions organized according to the formal principles of light, line, color, and space,.” The same way you move around the furniture in your apartment or rearrange your closet, Barnes created and altered ensembles.

I never visited the old Barnes; the new building is constructed of light wood [and has much better illumination according to someone from Madascgar [sic] via Larchmont who was a regular visitor to the old museum]. The collection spans two long floors; the Barnes is not a one visit museum

Here’s my ensemble:

Many fleshy Reniors, nothing British, Courbet-woman in black dress clutching pigeons to her breast, soutine-girl with mumps, henri rousseau-whistler’s mother except in red and in a garden. many early Picassos in pink and blue, not much Dutch, Matisse after Matisse, familiar looking Cezannes including the famous one of cardplayers, Van Gogh-a stumpy nude, Pippin-Jesus and Mary with hot pink skies, and at long last Claude in a Claudian Claude and Puvis De Chavannes-Greek mythology in shades of blue and gray.Many Modiglianis too.

Fact of The Day-60% of all art postcards bought by museum store shoppers are kept [to remind the buyer of the art they saw]

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