Tuesday, January 21, 2014

the glenstone gallery

ICDC has been cycling on Glen road in Potomac for years (great hills!) and always thought the gated entrance at 12002 was just another massive private residence.  A modern, chic one, but a private residence nonetheless.

Boy, was ICDC wrong!  It turns out that behind that gate, there is a world of creativity and gorgeous art brought to you by Mitchell and Emily Rales.  Rusty Powell (director of the National Gallery of Art) has called the Raleses’ collection “one of the world’s most important” of the post-World War II era.  It turns out that this gem has been open since 2006!

Glenstone is a museum - with the Raleses' home on the property, seamlessly integrated in the same architectural style - that seeks to integrate art, architecture and landscape into a "serene and contemplative environment to form a unique connection between art and visitor."

It's only proper to make sure your entire visit - from the drive in to getting back in one's car - is filled with the consumption of art.  That's why there's a Richard Serra sculpture in the parking lot. Wow.

 The museum (a second building is being constructed now, 
which will match the size of the Barnes and Phillips)

 The private residence

Serra's "Sylvester"

Tony Smith's  "Smug"

In an effort to beat the post-holiday blues, ICDC made her free appointment online and drove out to the Glenstone. Stunned is the best word to describe the experience.

A gateman greets you upon arrival at the property, signs you in and directs you to drive ahead - through the lushest green rolling hills ICDC has ever seen (certainly in the Washington area in the dead of winter).  Large, interesting sculptures grab your attention along the drive until you find the parking area (which does not look like an actual parking area - even THAT is chic and well-designed) where docents are waiting to direct you inside. 

Currently on exhibition (they run for two years) is the most playful, clever and fascinating show using a variety of mediums by Peter Fischli and David Weiss (running until February 2015).  ICDC's explanation won't do the show justice, so you'll just have to read the description and make an appointment.

It's a mind-bending event - and you MUST GO.  Even if modern art isn't your cup of tea, I assure you this is one to try.

Glenstone seamlessly integrates art, architecture and landscape into a serene and contemplative environment to form a unique connection between art and visitor.

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