Day of Rest and Beauty

I think of Mondays as my day of rest.  I have a Sun/Mon weekend as a rule, so Michael and I spend Sundays together – Monday is my day to myself.  I always play the violin, typically for a good while.  Yesterday I played twice – once for an hour and a half in the morning, and again for another hour in the early evening while waiting on Michael to come home.

In between I went to the Art Institute for a lovely interlude.  I get a lot out of my membership there.  My strategy these days is to pop in for an hour or so and try to learn about just one thing – an artist or a type of work, one exhibit, that sort of thing.  Yesterday’s discovery was Van Dyck, Rembrandt and the Portrait Print – an exhibit of wonderful etchings/portraits from the 16th and 17th centuries.

I also went through the Edlis/Neeson collection for the first time, which the Institute has on exhibit currently in the modern wing after receiving the incredible gift from its namesake benefactors last year.  I’ve been anxious to see what the trove would look like – it’s mainly big name artists from the last half of the 20th century – Warhol, Sherman, Richter, Lichtenstein – even Damien Hirst.  The 44 works are a very nice addition to the Art Institute’s collection.

During that second practice session yesterday I was kind of on fire.  I don’t really know what makes moments like that happen, but I was making it work – Michael arrived home and noticed.  Much as he did the other day when he asked what it is that pros do differently that makes them sound so much better than me, he asked me what I was doing that sounded so much better than I usually sound.

Obviously if I were able to play that well all the time I would!  I said I was in the zone.  I said I was really in tune.  I said my bow was moving well.  All true.  But I sure do wish I could turn it on like a switch.  Perhaps I was inspired by the art excursion.  Whatever it was, I can pretty much guarantee it will not be “on” when teacher arrives here in a couple of hours!

Thanks for reading.

Ryan

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