Friday, February 28, 2020

Art, light, space welcome to world class Palm Springs Art Museum

Palm Springs Art Museum has two outdoor sculpture gardens and is home to paintings and sculpture by Alexander Calder, Claire Falkenstein, Helen Frankenthaler, Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Roberto Matta, Robert Motherwell, Agnes Pelton, and David Alfaro Siqueiros, among many others. Several Moore pieces came from the Ted Weiner family.

Passion for art, deep pockets fund treasure of a museum in downtown Palm Springs.....(location, location, location)

 The open, beautifully lit space encourages meditation, wandering,
enjoying an impressive collection including many famous artists.


HOLLYWOOD ICONS, civic leaders, artists and art aficionados have made Palm Springs Art Museum a treasure, beloved by the diverse community and visitors alike.
The building itself -- 150,000 square feet -- is an innovative,  example of the midcentury modern architecture which distinguishes this remarkable desert town.
Docents do their homework at Palm Springs. Here, a
knowledgeable volunteer takes museum visitors through

 the exhibits with thoughtful commentary at each stop.

Its striking, light-loving design is typical of that style popularized from the 1930s through the 1960s.
SKILLED DOCENTS have done their homework and offer regular tours, volunteering time and knowledge to the beloved building. It includes a delightful bistro, two outdoor sculpture garden patios, a lovely small theater -- the Annenberg, named after patrons -- and an impressive array of changing exhibits. This varied, eye-catching  contemporary collection is at the heart of the museum’s mission.
Art, space, share a lovely
 Palm Springs setting.
It contains an artful array of more than 3,000 sculptures, paintings and prints, 2,000 fine art photographs, and another 40,000 negatives, contact sheets and photo-based objects. Significant gifts came from philanthropist oilman Ted Weiner, who kept a home in Palm Springs and was both a generous patron and sharp-eyed collector. He knew and appreciated the work of renowned sculptor Henry Moore, and their friendship resulted in "Reclining Figure" and several other Moore acquisitions which helped put the museum on the international museum radar.
This Duane Hanson super-realistic piece awaits perusal.
Sculpture attracts viewers.

This Henry Moore "Woman' is one of
several pieces in the museum created
by the renowned sculptor whose work
was purchased and donated by a Texas
oilman with a sharp eye for modern art.

  Given Palm Springs' international reputation as an epicenter of mid-century modernism, art from this period forms the foundation of the museum’s collection.
The museum's use of space is both artful and enticing, drawing the eye forward,
maintaining an intriguing flow of color, lines and subject matter.  
AMONG OTHER  WELL known artists represented are Alexander Calder, Claire Falkenstein, Helen Frankenthaler, Barbara Hepworth, Marina Abramović, Louise Bourgeois, John Chamberlain, Antony Gormley, Duane Hanson, Mona Hatoum, Anish Kapoor, Anselm Keifer, Sarah Sze, Dale Chilhully and Stanley Whitney. California artists play a significant part in the dynamic collection of contemporary art, but internationally known European, Asian and South American artists are represented, too.
SKILLED DOCENTS do their homework to offer interesting, volunteering as they share the delights of the beautiful building. The space includes a lovely small theater, the Annenberg, named after patrons, and an impressive array of changing exhibits including one by native American artist Gerald Clarke, whose wit, empathy and humor address injustice in often biting ways.
The Palm Springs Art Museum is open, airy and welcoming, with plenty of room to enjoy
and study the impressive collection of contemporary work on display.
The impressive modern and contemporary collection is at the heart of the museum’s mission. It contains a stunning array of more than 3,000 sculptures, paintings and prints, 2,000 fine art photographs, and another 40,000 negatives, contact sheets and  photo-based objects.
The mountains that frame the town bracket the building, too, offering patrons an eye-catching approach. It's a fitting preview for what's inside.
THE TREASURE trove of paintings, sculptures and works on paper form a who's who of the modernist movement and the development of contemporary art.
Artists experiment with form and materials, and thoughtful curation moves the viewer easily along through three floors of exhibitions.
The museum planned a move from its outgrown smaller space in 1974 when renowned architect  E. Stewart Williams agreed to design the building, emerging from partial retirement to do so.
Originally the Palm Springs Desert Museum, it has grown from its initial location 1938 at  La Plaza Arcade on Palm Canyon Drive near downtown Palm Springs.  In 1958, it moved to a larger building but soon outgrew that as well. The present location is its third and there are two other buildings under the museum umbrella.  Free admission Thursday from 4-8 p.m., and every second Sunday. Regular hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m., closed Wednesdays.

John Seibert plays a hapless politician thrust into the
spotlight with Jacque Wilke as a "temp" secretary who becomes
a "Sarah Palinesque" running mate. Natalie Storrs is the TV
journalist who covers the action. All three are skilled comics. 
As refreshing as spring rains, "The Outsider" at North Coast Repertory Theatre offers light-hearted respite from election bludgeoning and the world's woes. David Ellenstein maneuvers a crack cast in a fast-paced political satire by Paul Slade Smith. While it's farcical, it has serious undertones, cleverly accentuated by Ellenstein's always astute direction. A truly skilled veteran ensemble doesn't miss a beat -- timing and body language are everything here. Our opening night audience lept to its feat in a "Standing O." It runs through March 22, a guaranteed, timely tonic for what ails you. Laugh yourself silly.  

The Allen Elizabethan Theatre is one of three exciting venues at OSF.
NEXT UP: The world renowned Oregon Shakespeare Festival introduces its 2020 season this week with a new artistic director and a slate of plays to wow the veteran theater goer or the novice. Read about this extraordinary theater celebrating its landmark 85th season in Ashland, Oregon, where three venues beckon and the wealth of plays awaits. Remember to explore, learn and live and catch us each Friday for a novel look at the arts, nature, travel, cruising, family and more.


  1. Pasadena Palm Spring Part-timersFebruary 29, 2020 at 3:52 PM

    Fun piece about our favorite Calufornia museum. Love the size and surprising vatiety.

  2. Mendocino MeanderersFebruary 29, 2020 at 4:25 PM

    Happy to see this, a well deserved piece and great to have the attention drawn.

  3. Portland Palm Springs Part-timersMarch 1, 2020 at 11:54 AM

    What a discovery.....we will put it on our list of "musts" next visit.

  4. Tennessee TravelersMarch 3, 2020 at 12:00 PM

    Fun piece, lively place. A well loved, and used museum.

  5. Love meandering with you two...all the peaks, valleys, coastlines and treasures.