My Latest Score
I did it, mah friends: I ordered those Tory Burch pearl slides ($350 — more sizes here, though selling quickly!), seen on blogger Sincerely Jules in the photo above. I’ll be wearing these to mini’s Baptism, along with this Ulla Johnson number. Also plan on wearing with this Ann Taylor poplin dress I’ve mentioned a trillion and ten times — perfect outfit for a meeting!
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The most popular items on Le Blog this week:
+My new daily planner ($29). I am OBSESSED with it — it’s ginormous, but it gives me lots of space to make notes, jot down to-dos, etc. It also has a little square to write in your “daily gratitude,” which sounds a little hokey at first, but it always makes me pause and think.
+Fun little gingham dress (under $30) for easy weekend wear.
+Chic pommed leather slides ($69).
+Easy striped t-dress ($38).
Mr. Magpie and I took minimagpie to the Museum of Contemporary Art one afternoon last week. I try to take mini on one “big” excursion each week — a music class, a museum trip, a stroll on the lake, something more substantive and stimulating than her usual daily strolls around the neighborhood. I’m sure she won’t remember any of it, but it’s a small practice I intend to preserve as she grows, and it adds some color to my day, too. On Tuesdays, admission to the MCA is free for residents of Illinois, so we headed over there to check out the Takashi Murakami exhibit, “The Octopus Eats Its Own Leg.” The exhibit is aptly named: octupii will eat their own legs and grow new ones, and Murakami’s extensive and varied collection appears as one enormous cycle of regeneration, of shedding old styles and adopting new ones, of constant recreation. He plays in media as diverse as t-shirts and enormous 30-foot sculptures, and his interests and aesthetics have ebbed and flowed over time, with the incorporation of new influences, as the exhibit dramatically showcases. (P.S. — You may know Murakami from his famous cover art for Kanye West’s Graduation album.)
The exhibit was interesting for us, and visually appealing to minimagpie: dizzying walls of anime-influenced pop art to stare at. And if you go, stand for a minute in the “temple room” at the end of the exhibit, which the curators designed to feel much like entering a sacred space: two enormous statues at either end, towering over you like religious figures in a chapel, and enormous panels flanking the walls that glow as though back-lit, like stained glass. It invites a strange head-space — reflective, humbling, quieting — though much of the artwork is more pop / anime than it is spiritual in tone: as happens so frequently in my encounters with contemporary art, I left in a state of cognitive dissonance.
After mulling over our afternoon for a few hours, I was chatting with a girlfriend about the experience, and shared that I conceptually understand contemporary art as a logical extension and inversion–and often, perversion!–of so many art history trends, but it’s not–for me–a particularly pleasant museum-going experience. It feels like work. You need to read the tags to understand the context, and instead of breezing through an exhibit and stopping to take in a work for its aesthetic appeal, you hunch behind a crowd of people to read the placard to begin to unpack what’s happening. It’s slow-going, studious museum-going, strangely at odds with the seeming unruliness of contemporary art itself. Contemporary artists would likely take issue with this claim, but, to me, as a genre of art predominantly consumed in art galleries around the world, it seems to prescribe its own rules of viewership with particular tenacity. They require context; they tell us: “look at me, but actually, don’t look at me — look around me and think about why I’m here, or read about the background that brought me here, or think about the grand gesture I’m trying to make here!” My friend mentioned that there had been a magnetic potato on a wall at the MCA a few months back. Such installations are almost self-abnegating, in my eyes: “I’m a potato, I’m absurd! But actually what you’ll end up thinking about is less about the potato itself and more about the museum and why it’s allowed to live in that museum and what the artist is trying to channel with it — is it a modern day still-life, the preferred subject matter for so many artists playing with chiaroscuro back in the day?” And so, the potato erases itself and dissolves into a blur of art historical context.
At the end of the day, though, these works always elicit a reaction from me, and, in my humble and admittedly ill-informed opinion, such is the nature and object of art.
What do you think? Are you a contemporary art gal? What am I missing / overstating / oversimplifying here?
+OMG. Mini has got to have one of these party hats when she turns 1.
+Love the ornate monogram on this bathmat ($28).
+Seriously fun earrings ($88).
+I own an OTS dress by this line that I have lived in — one of my go-to dresses to chill in at home — and am considering adding this polka dot lovely ($124) to the mix, as well.
+Extra 20% off Bergdorf’s Sale…holy schnike! UM, my favorite maternity pajamas (I must have blogged about them 23 times?! — see my maternity must-haves here), marked down from $155 to $55!!!; Valentino slides, marked down to $276; a Karla Colletto one-piece for $82; a bunch of gorgeous Rebecca Taylor dresses; and, if you’re being extra-naughty, this Fendi monster pouch for $640.
+Easy weekend living, for under $50.
+Le t-shirt ($126).
+I think I need this eye cream ($60).