All The Other Cool Stuff We Did Today

Rather than break up the rest of today into several posts, I’ll lump it all into one. Overview: We went non-stop from 9am to 5pm. Time for a drink.

Before we went to the Penitentiary, we walked through the Penn campus, seeing so much new construction named after big donors (a good thing) and enjoying watching all the kids walking to class. We saw one white girl, that’s about it. Asian. Indian/Pakistani. Black. Tons of women in Muslim headdress. And to a one, they all ignored the man proselytizing – no one even looked up.

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The lone white chick (not really, but you get my drift)
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The Ron Perelman Quad is next door to this building he named for his late wife Claudia Cohen.
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And this guy – talking loudly about God. No one looked up from their phone

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Rodin Museum** up next: Small but stunning. Only bummer is their audio tour headphones were not working and the app I downloaded had lots of exhibits not there. I asked and was told they hadn’t updated the app. Um, wouldn’t that be a good idea if you have an app?? [** It’s worth reading the About the Museum linked page and view the slideshow].

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I’m obsessed with floors, especially gorgeous ones like this.
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Mr. EOS was the model.
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The lousy app…
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These doors!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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What I didn’t ask and should have – the Rodin Museum in Paris….they also have many of these pieces, including The Thinker. How can that be?

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Then off right next door to the Barnes Foundation – a little more crowded than the Rodin but relatively empty for a Friday. And the most expensive venue of the day. $20. I thought that was steep. Rodin was $8.00. The prison was $12. $15 might have been better but maybe they don’t want to deal with handing out change.

No one told me I couldn’t take photos of the artwork until I got a heavy tap on my shoulder to cease and desist pronto. So use your imagination – Amazing collection of Renoir, Matisse – you name the artist – it was there.

The building itself is quite serene – with reflecting pools outside that made it all very quiet.
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Illegal – shhh..
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By the end of Barnes, our feet were pretty achy breaky, so we walked back to the hotel – just about 30 minutes – and came upon a large demonstration for Palestine and just some more of the pretty Philly skyline. SO MUCH NEW CONSTRUCTION everywhere in Center City. I didn’t realize Philadelphia was having a boom. What they are also having is one heck of a lot of police sirens all day and night.

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13 thoughts on “All The Other Cool Stuff We Did Today

  1. Very impressive photo essay. I thought you might have a picture the old Frank Furness library on campus, but, College Hall does quite nicely. Awesome light fixture in the Rodin Museum (among other things in that neat building).

    1. Our Penn visit was pretty much in a “drive-by” mode, in a hurry to get to the penitentiary. But I will say that I am not happy that ironic building is now named for some donors who paid for a renovation and expansion. It’s no longer called the Furness Library. Ugh.

  2. We had toured the Barnes a few years ago. What a conflict inside from out in the new location. Loses a lot of the man’s intention by no longer being in the home setting. So weird to see the actual house layout within that exterior. I know it was a big deal to move it and there were good reasons to do so. Something does seem a little lost. Had you ever gone to its original location, across from St. Joseph’s college?

    1. Conflict is a perfect word and most art traditionalists I know are very unhappy with the new space. Yes, pretty from the outside. Yes, neighbors of the old space complained about all the buses and how hard it was to get to but agree it just doesn’t quite feel right. Saw old Barnes two or the times. I’m sure you are aware and have seen the documentary about the Barnes Foundation, Art of The Steal.

    1. Philadelphia is a vibrant beautiful city full of culture and history- if you can get beyond the enormous homeless population and inner city crime. Plus, beggars asking for food and raiding trash cans at Reading Terminal Market made lots of tourists uncomfortable. If I ran that market, after hours I’d open a food kitchen with all the edible leftovers.

  3. Thanks for the beautiful pics of my alma mater. It was like being on Locust Walk and College Green myself on a beautiful fall day. I too can’t believe Penn renamed Furness. Some things need to stay the same while evolution happens around them. Furness would be one of those things, in my book.

    Having grown up in southern NJ and lived in Philly for 8 years, Philadelphia will always be near and dear to my heart. I enjoyed my trip down memory lane via your pics. Thanks again for sharing.

    1. This doesn’t make me sound very cultured, but I’d skip the Rodin. The penitentiary is worth every creepy moment. The Rodin, while pretty, has some sterility about it I can’t explain.

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