Whirlwind Art Trip with Kate (part three)

Homeward bound.

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We got a pretty early start... because it's a long drive (7+/- hours) and we had another art stop in Chicago. A bridge was closed, so we were detoured north out of St. Louis... advantage being a new view! (Bissinger's, by the way, is a chocolatier. Mmm.)

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The weather was being rather dramatic right off the bat.

Our first stop in Chicago, though, was for food!

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La Barca is a Mexican Restaurant/Taqueria/Food Mart that was featured on the Chicago espisode of Marcus Samuelsson's PBS Food series No Passport Required. This was actually Kate's idea!

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And it was a very good idea! The tacos were delicious... I had asada and pollo. And chips & salsa. And a beer.

Next stop:

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A visit with Aviv Benn at Devening Projects+Editions.

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I met Aviv last year at her MFA Show in Chicago... a trip that I must not have blogged about! Kate's July 2017 youngspace interview with Aviv Benn. 

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We also popped in to see Volker Saul's work and I kept being drawn to this one... with thoughts turning to sewing and Alabama Chanin.

The weather turned to crap (-pier) on the way home from Chicago. I thought I had the worst of it in southern Wisconsin, but then Kate took the wheel around Fond du Lac and it became crappiest -- wet slushy snow, not made any better by stupid drivers (of big trucks).

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We ditched the freeway on the last leg home. At least downtown Appleton looked sort of pretty. We followed a snowplow for the last stretch. Needless to say, it was great to arrive home!


Whirlwind Art Trip with Kate (part two)

We had a leisurely start on Friday morning, then head out for a bite to eat before our museum stops. A friend of Kate's had suggested Cafe Osage at Bowood, so that's where we went. What a wonderful place! Very open and light, with huge windows... We both remarked that it was my mother's kind of place -- she'd have loved it -- and noted that 90% of the clientele reminded us of her, too! Nana-types!

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We had to have a beverage with breakfast/more like brunch, so it might as well be something fun! I chose "Cherub's Cup" (north shore #6 gin, st. germain liqueur, adami prosecco, strawberry simple syrup) and Kate had "Rosey Bee" (barr hill raw honey infused gin, rose liqueur, rose geranium, lemon). We shared a plate of Roasted Cauliflower (pickled grapes, tahini, breadcrumb)  because how could we not?? Kate had Poached Eggs with Lox and I had the Artichoke Omelet. It was all so good!!

Kate overheard a woman at the next table giving the waitress what-for about a few things, including that the music was overpowering. Feedback is great and everyone has their opinion, but the music was NOT overpowering and everything was wonderful -- and I felt bad for our waitress. When she brought our check, I made it a point to tell her that everything was perfect -- the drinks, the food, the service, and the music! She laughed and it was as if I could see the earlier unwarranted criticism falling from her shoulders. It made my day, and I hope it made hers a little better, too.

Anyway, the Bowood Garden/Home/Gift shop that Cafe Osage is a part of was so fun, and there was a special Holiday Shop open in a building across the street, too. So we did a little poking around and shopping.

Then it was off to the main event. Ruth Asawa: Life's Work at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation. I think the Pulitzer is one of my favorite places ever. The exhibit is breathtaking and, without apology, I'm going to post a ton of photos because it's all just so fascinating and mesmerizing... each individual piece, each part of each piece, the pieces as they hang together and relate to each other, apart and layered, the spaces, the shadows... It's ethereal and indescribable and... just so beautiful.

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Fascinating.

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Still fascinating.

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And still fascinating.

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I just couldn't get enough.

I want to live there.

This lovely children's book, Ruth Asawa: A Sculpting Life, was waiting when we got home and I can't wait to read it to the kiddos!

We caught our breath and walked next door to the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis.

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Sanford Biggers, Shepherd, 2016; glitter, tar, acrylic, spray paint, assorted textiles, antique quilts

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Jean-Michel Basquiat, Untitled panel, 1980; oilstick, graphite pencil, latex on board

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It was a bit early for dinner, but not enough time to go back to the house, so we went to Sophie's Artist Lounge & Cocktail Club, located at the Kranzberg Arts Foundation.

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And we had some more delightful drinks! This was a combo of gin, thyme liqueur, basil simple syrup, and cava -- it was the thyme & basil components + plus the sparkling wine that I found irresistible! Cheers!!

For dinner, we went to the brand new Grand Tavern by David Burke in the Angad Arts Hotel, and that was another incredible meal! We shared some emotional lobster dumplings, and then Kate had black linguine with clam sauce and I had branzino (with artichoke hummus, black olive, vegetable vinaigrette). Two Nana-types at the neighboring table (a mother & daughter, actually) had couch potatoes and clothesline bacon, and offered a piece of the bacon to us (they were big pieces and super-thick). The bacon is actually served on a little "clothesline," held with clothespins, and caramelized with a little torch right at the table. Yeah. It was crazy (and good -- it can be crazy if it's good)!! Oh, and we had some flame action at our table with an old-school baked alaska for dessert.

Then it was across the street to the Fabulous Fox and the Hip Hop Nutcracker... and you know the rest of that story!


Whirlwind Art Trip with Kate (part one)

Bonny referred to my "whirlwind art trips with Kate" the other day and I loved it! I've decided that it's a thing... currently, an Instagram hashtag! #whirlwindarttripwithkate 

It fits like a glove. This is a photo & caption that Kate posted on Facebook the other day and I immediately made it my profile pic:

Ruth Asawa Pulitzer St Louis

Visiting the Ruth Asawa Life’s Work show at Pulitzer and feeling all the
Black Mountain College love and lore rushing back... such a stunning show,
and there’s my mom because she’s such a super spontaneous fast-paced art trip copilot
and it was her idea to run to STL for this show in the first place.

Haha. Kate's not always the instigator! I don't remember how I first learned about this show, but from that moment I was plotting a trip to see it. And there you see me and a big part of the exhibit... there will be more on that later. First things first.

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We planned our departure for Wednesday after work, and it turns out that it was the same day that Maddy returned from her vintage gig at an Oregon winery! Kate's day was shorter than mine, so those two had a nice catch-up over lunch and hung out for a while. I was able to kiss & hug & hit the high notes while I finished packing, and then Kate and I hit the road at right about 5pm. We stayed overnight outside of Chicago and got a reasonably early start on Thursday.

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When I wasn't dropping DPNs, stitch markers, or stitches, I was even able to get some knitting done on the way! (I think I'll finally finish that mitt tonight.)

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Our first stop was for lunch! We were actually headed someplace else when Salt + Smoke Barbeque caught our eye. We were not disappointed with that choice!!

Then it was on to the St. Louis Art Museum to see the Kehinde Wiley show. Oh Em Gee...

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I'm going to post only this photo here and I love it because it shows the scale of his work. They are wild... in the best possible way. You can scroll through the rest here:

There was much more to see, of course.

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This amazing covered bowl & plate set caught my eye. Does anyone else see balls of yarn in that design???

We checked in at our Airbnb -- a beautiful carriage house that I kept imagining with my own furniture and thinking about where I'd put my yarn. Those are the best... the ones that I want to move into! This was my 22nd stay at an Airbnb, and I guess you could say I'm a fan! (Join Airbnb through this link and you'll receive a $40 credit toward your first trip, and I'll get a $20 credit, too.)

The house was close enough that we walked over to check out Brewery Lights at Anheuser-Busch! What a fun event!! Admission is free and includes a beer (or beverage of choice).

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Does it look like we had fun?? Haha. Completely out of character, we opted for not one but TWO souvenir photos... one with the LOVE BEER sign and one with the CLYDESDALE (because CLYDESDALE)!

On the way back, we stopped off at a fabulous restaurant called Frazer's and had a wonderful meal. The food was superb and the service was top-notch.

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I'm thinking this is a Corgi? Christmas decoration?? Am I missing something?

Then we walked home and fell into bed, ready for Friday (our only full day in St. Louis)!