Sunday, November 27th

Sunday I headed across town to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.  It was the last day of the Guillermo del Toro “At Home with Monsters” exhibit.  I ended up liking the exhibit a lot more than I expected, mostly because it was such a vivid exploration of how hard it is to try and represent horror and the supernatural in visual form without it all falling flat combined with del Toro’s clear love of presenting the subject matter coming through.

Art ahead, some NSFW.

“Chopin v. 2.0” by by Brian Poor, 2009.

I walked through the sculpture garden and picked up my tickets.  The Guillermo del Toro show was a timed entrance, so I passed a short wait in the coffee shop and a bit of exploring the area.  LACMA is a complex lots of buildings with odd and sometimes hidden connections between them (like having to get to the second floor by going across a bridge from another building), which I like a lot.

Careful, careful… (sculpture garden at LACMA)

Most of the morning was spent in the GtD exhibit.  These aren’t very good photos, I liked the prints a lot but there were a ton of other guests in the exhibit so it was nearly impossible to get a straight-on shot, or even stand still a lot of the time.

“Big Fish Eat Little Fish” by Pieter van der Heyden after Pieter Bruegel the Elder, 1557.
“The Critic” by Julio Ruelas, 1907.
From the Landscapes series (1970-1996) by Eyvind Earl.

The show is basically a chance for del Toro to take some of his collection of inspirations and creations and present them in the hopes that others will love it to.  His excitement at this world shows through, which I really liked.

“The World Is A Cruel Place” by Audrey Pongracz, 2015.

There were also a bunch of set pieces from some of his movies.  I don’t have pictures of those, in part because they were often so shiny.  It’s difficult to take the occult and show it in the physical world, something I kept thinking about as I drifted through the rest of my trip to the LACMA.

Pavilion for Japanese Art.
“Daruma” by Gako (Tengen Chiben)

“He peers into eons
With his clear-eyed gaze.
Dark willows, bright flowers!”

Hanging Vase in the Form of a Quiver – Japan, Genroku era (1688 – 1704).
From the Chinese Snuff Bottle exhibit.
“Pillar” by Ai Weiwei, 2006 / “Turbulence” by Zheng Chongbin, 2013
“Water SZLB15” (detail) by Young-Il Ahn, 2015

The description notes the artist, “often explores the theme of water in his art, a focus inspired by his memories of being lost on the Pacific Ocean in a small boat in July 1983.”  The painting is quite large, this photo is probably around 5′ square section (most of the painting).

“FMR Series 021” by Mineo Mizuno, 2015
“Hollywood” (detail) by Robert Witt Ames, 1935
Panes from the Retable of Agnes de Beaufremont from the workshop of Joinville-Vignory, 1424.
“Owl-Chimera” by Jean Desire Ringel de d’Illzach, 1905.
“Batrachian-Chimera” by Jean Desire Ringel d’Illzach, 1905.

These lovely little fellows sitting quietly in a back room, and I was delighted to stumble upon them.  Eventually I ended up in the contemporary building, where a show of recent gifts from artists was up.

“Draped Marble (Carrara, St. Laurant, Brown Onyx) by Analia Saban, 2016.
“We could be looking for the same thing” (detail) by Friedrich Kunath, 2016.

There was a bunch more at the LACMA to explore.  If you choose to visit, it’s worth knowing that many of the immersive exhibits require advanced tickets.  I was sad to miss out on some of those, but still had a great time.