The Old Fogies go to the Guggenheim Museum in New York

Whilst in New York, I was keen to visit some of the famous art galleries and museum and fortunately the New York Pass gave us free entrance to a wide number of institutions. Although Mrs Nice enjoy art, she was not that keen to use valuable time running around art galleries, therefore a decision was made to limit it to three and I chose the Guggenheim Museum, The Metropolitan Museum and The Museum of Modern Art.

The Guggenheim Museum or Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is located on Fifth Avenue on the corner of East 89th Street near Central Park.

We were curious to see the iconic building at close quarters and as we approached the building, it unmistakable form began to take shape. The museum was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and was developed as a cylindrical building with a large base, however the building is wider at the top than the bottom.

Its style is certainly unusual on the outside but it is unique ramp gallery that extends up from ground level in a long spiral up to the top of the building that is stunning. When we entered fully in the museum we are faced with large wooden boxes, at first we thought they were a strange installation but they were full of artworks that were being hanged for an exhibition.

The museum opened in 1959 to considerable acclaim, unfortunately Frank Lloyd Wright had died six months before the opening. Although now considered a masterpiece, at the time not everyone was happy with the building. Some people believed that the building would overshadow the museum’s artworks and artists questioned whether their works suffer from the lack of natural light.

Some of the highlights of the museum are Constantin Brancusi’s Adam and Eve and King of Kings

Pablo Picasso’s Woman with Yellow Hair

Édouard Manet’s Before the Mirror

Pablo Picasso’s Fernande with a Black Mantilla

and a set of Edgar Degas bronzes, Dancer Moving Forward, Arms Raised; Seated Woman, Wiping Her Left Side and Spanish Dance.

When you walk around inside the museum, you do tend to admire the building more than the artworks and there is often a lack of focus as you meander around the various levels. However, this is a fascinating space and it is difficult not to look upwards towards the light streaming through the top of the galleries.

As we slowly descended back to the entrance and back outside, we were both agreed that it is an incredible building and well worth the all too brief visit.

Old Fogies Travels are the adventures of two elderly Londoners (The Old Fogies) as they explore their home town and travel around the world looking out for the strange, unusual and absurd.

Our articles are published on our blog but also listed on the website of our friends at Visiting London Guide.com here.