Happy Monday, Berkeley.
I am writing to you from Paris, France. The weather is hot, and the jet lag is at large. But so is the bread and the cheese and the art.
Yesterday, I visited my favorite museum, the Musée D’Orsay. It used to be a railway station opened in 1900 for the Exposition Universelle, or world’s fair, but eventually, it was abandoned. In 1986, it became a museum, displaying art ranging from 1848 to 1914 and from Edgar Degas to Édouard Manet to Vincent Van Gogh to Oscar-Claude Monet to Pierre-Auguste Renoir to Paul Cézanne to Paul Gauguin to Auguste Rodin to Georges Seurat and others.
My personal favorite is Van Gogh, though Monet is a close second.
But since you are not in Paris, on Monday, go to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, where “René Magritte: The Fifth Season” is still running.
Or, on Tuesday, go to the de Young Museum, where you can see “Fans of the Eighteenth Century” to explore the history and aesthetics of handheld fans in Europe — an exhibit that I’m sure will please 18th century art fans and general art fans alike. Or see “Weapons of Mass Seduction: The Art of Propaganda” to view World War I- and World War II-era posters, among other pieces.
And on Wednesday, you could go to the Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive. On display most recently are “Cecilia Vicuña: About to Happen” and “Way Bay 2.” Cecilia Vicuña’s work traces her career in a conversation about discarded and displaced people, places and things in the context of climate change, while “Way Bay 2” is the museum’s second installation of art celebrating artists from the Bay Area.
The art you’ll see in the first half of this week will probably instigate some more pressing conversations than the stuffy stuff of history at the Musée D’Orsay. But it will also probably wear you out.
On Thursday, take it easy.
Stay home, put on some music, and cook something up. Maybe a hot dog, maybe a coffee, fudge and Oreo mud pie. Maybe both, maybe neither.
For the music, here are some French tunes that’ll make you feel like you’re a real chef de cuisine: “Les Jours Électriques,” “Double je,” “Alors On Danse,” “Sur ma route” and finally, “Les Champs-Élysées.”
And finally, there’s nothing like being far away from home — and without time to lie down and watch some TV — to make me appreciate Netflix.
On Friday, the sixth season of “Orange is the New Black” will premiere on Netflix. So stay in, pop some popcorn and cue it up. If you’re feeling a little adventurous, you could try to recreate Andrew’s popcorn from from “Whiplash,” as seen on “Binging With Babish.” Then, if “Orange is the New Black” turns out not to be good, just stay on YouTube and watch the rest of the videos on Binging With Babish’s channel. A favorite of mine is Homer Simpson’s moon waffles.
Now, as always, an article to read while you’re waiting for your ticket at the de Young or for your hot dog to roast. The reviews are in! Sarah Alford wrote about “Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again,” giving it a 3.5 out of 5.0. Read her critique here. And, while you’re at it, The Daily Clog has more for you to read on the new film.
Au revoir. Until next time.