Then recently, it occured to me that, in lieu of complaining, I should (perhaps) attend some of the big deal events that are free to everyone. We are, after all, a people of street festivals and "grand openings", new buildings and artists.
When Belette suggested that she loves Frank Gehry and that she envied my opportunity to see his new add-on at the AGO, I was all "I hate additions." and "I hate the new facade." (which, rather interestingly, I've been able to watch go up because it's on my walking route to work) and "I hate November. Why didn't they open in August?"
But jury duty dispersed at 3:30 p.m. on Friday and the free, open-to-the-public AGO reopening was scheduled for 4:00 p.m. I was walking right by. There were reporters and news trucks and large TV screens displaying intriguing details about the project. I would have been stupid not to join on in.
Now, I didn't expect the line to end 2 miles from the front doors. I didn't expect to wait 90 minutes on the queue. Old, cynical Krissie would have said "Um, excuse me. I'm from Toronto. I don't wait on lines! I make reservations. (And if you choose to keep me standing there because of your wretched planning, I will bestow upon you long, whithering looks before huffily walking away.)"
However, the new me made friends with a little old lady who knew a lot about British crime fiction and Rothko and the time went by. At 4:30 still a mile from the entrance, dismayed, I thought I'd have to leave in order pick up M from daycare. Then I noticed a message on my cell phone from a mom-friend inviting M over to her house for dinner and a sleepover. Egad, responsibility absolved! I mean, seriously, the art gods wanted me to see this thing.
Finally the time came. I made it inside and thought - I'm like a big city journalist with my camera and my notepad. (Of course the real journalists saw it last week and they didn't wait.) That's till the security guy told me no photos were allowed. So I just pretended I was talking on the phone while surrepticiously snapping away.
For starters, the line up:
Here's a gloomy pre-dusk shot of the facade. Yes, that's TO in November at 4:15...:
On entering the building I was presented with this guide:
Which I didn't really need because it's much the same inside - except for the big, new, fancy glass part:
In truth, the wood (all douglas fir) is beautiful. Cool glass and warm, soft wood are delightfully juxtaposed...
Here's a shot of the cool new winding staircase:
And another of this wood branch sculpture suspended high up the wall. Note the different wood tones and the light where the glass meets the rafters...
Interesting Canadiana sculpture:
And view from the North facing windows:
So, Belette: Though it's not the same as being here, ceci est pour toi! xo