Flushing Meadows-Corona Park is the site of the U.S. Open tennis tournament.  On our first day in New York City, we walked through the beautiful park...

and arrived at the Unisphere.
Built for the 1964-1965 World's Fair by U.S. Steel as a symbol of world peace, based on the fair's theme, Peace Through Understanding, the Unisphere is 140 feet high, 120 feet in diameter and weighs 900,000 pounds.  It is one of the largest globes ever made.
Since the continents are the heaviest parts of the all-steel sculpture and they aren't evenly distributed, the Unisphere is top heavy. Very top heavy. It was carefully engineered to account for the unbalanced mass.
The Unisphere is centered in a large, circular reflecting pool and is surrounded by a series of water-jet fountains designed to obscure its tripod pedestal. 

The effect is meant to make it appear as if it is floating in space.

All photos in this post were taken by me during my trip to New York City in September, 2012.



As an anniversary present to ourselves my husband and I traveled to New York City for three days.  I was really excited because it was my first trip to the Big Apple.  After living in Chicago for nearly 25 years I never had any desire to see New York City (what does it have that I can't see in Chicago?).  But after my husband went to New York City last year to visit relatives and came back with pictures of Ground Zero and the surrounding area, I decided that I wanted to go there too.

Our first day really had a "sports" theme to it.  We saw:

The New York Mets' Stadium...

Banners showing past Mets' players hang outside the stadium.
Then we walked across the street to see where the U.S. Open tennis tournament is played at the Billie Jean King USTA National Tennis Center:
Here is Arthur Ashe Stadium where the finals are played:

The Court of Champions celebrates the winners of the U.S. Open Tennis Tournament.
Leaving the tennis center, we took the subway to the Bronx to see the other baseball stadium, Yankee Stadium...

where we met the famous New York Yankee, Mickey Rivers:

From Yankee Stadium we traveled to Harlem to see the Rucker Park basketball court.  Many who played at the park have gone on to play in the NBA, including Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain, Julius Erving and recently Kevin Durant. The court is named after Harlem teacher and playground director for the New York City Parks Department Holcombe Rucker, who started a basketball tournament in 1950 in order to help less fortunate kids stay off the streets and aim for college careers.

Leaving Rucker Park we took the subway down to Times Square.  I'll talk about that in another post.

All photos in this post were taken by me during my trip to New York City in September, 2012.



Amazing as it is, Vincent van Gogh sold only one painting during his lifetime.  One painting!  Now Vincent van Gogh is one of the most beloved painters.  One of his paintings can sell for tens of millions of dollars. 

The Musée d'Orsay's permanent collection contains some of the most famous and beautiful works by Vincent van Gogh.

Van Gogh often used himself as a model; he produced over 43 self-portraits, paintings or drawings in ten years.
La Chambre de Van Gogh à Arles (1889)

I have seen all three versions of this painting: here at the Musée d'Orsay, at the Art Institute of Chicago and in the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.

L'Arlésienne (1888)
Madame Ginoux ran the Café de la Gare in ArlesVan Gogh, inspired by the sketches of her by his friend, Paul Gauguin, ended up painting six different paintings of Madame Ginoux.

Eugène Boch (1888)

Eugène Boch was a Belgian painter and a member of the family of fine china manufacturers, the Boch of Villeroy & Boch.  Eugène often exchanged works with other artists, as he did with van Gogh.  Upon his death in 1941, Boch bequeathed this painting, which he received in accordance to the last will of Vincent and Theo, to the Louvre.

Le Docteur Paul Gachet (1890)

After he moved to Auvers-sur-Oise, Vincent became a patient of Dr. Gachet on the advice of his brother Theo. The portrait of the doctor was painted during van Gogh's particularly intense creative phase. The doctor is portrayed in a melancholy pose reflecting, as Van Gogh wrote, "the desolate expression of our time". The only touch of hope in the portrait brushed in cold colors is the foxglove which brings a little comfort and relief through its curative properties. 

La sieste: d'après Millet (1890)

The siesta was painted while Van Gogh was in the mental hospital in Saint-Rémy de Provence. The composition is taken from a drawing by French painter Jean-François Millet. Van Gogh often copied the works of Millet.
La Salle de Danse à Arles (1888)

This painting shows an evening at the Folies-Arlésiennes, a dance hall on Boulevard des Lices in Arles. A reference to Japanese art is evident in the strange, decorative foreground where the curves of the hair are dominant.

In May 1890, van Gogh left the clinic in Saint-Rémy to be closer to his brother, Theo and Dr. Gachet in the town of Auvers-sur-OiseDuring these 70 days van Gogh painted nearly 70 paintings, some of his most beautiful works.
Mademoiselle Gachet dans son jardin à Auvers-sur-Oise (1890)

Chaumes de Cordeville à Auvers-sur-Oise (1890)

L'Église d'Auvers-sur-Oise, Vue du Chevet (1890)

For more information visit: http://www.musee-orsay.fr.

To get to the Musée d'Orsay, use:
Metro: Line 12 to Solférino
RER: Line C to Musée d'Orsay
Bus: Lines 24, 63, 68, 69, 73, 83, 84, 94

  • Regular admission is 9.00.
  • FREE with your Paris Museum Pass.
  • There may be a charge for special exhibitions.
  • Closed Mondays.
  • Closed January 1, May 1, Christmas Day.
  • Open 9:30-6:00 on Tuesday-Thursday.
  • Open 9:30-9:45 on Thursday

NOTE: All photos of the paintings in this blog post were taken by me on my visit to the Musée d'Orsay in May, 2006. Unfortunately photography is no longer allowed at the museum.