Friday, April 9, 2010

You gotta have art

The first few weeks of Anna’s life were spent in Ohio due to the fact that hers was an interstate adoption. Time seemed to drag and we were eager to get out and do things with our new charge. One of the things we took advantage of was the Toledo Museum of Art. Faithful readers will know that I am a HUGE fan and will go to this venerable institution whenever I can. Today I took my art history class from the Adrian Campus down to view the art as I do each semester. It was a good turnout, and I hope that the students got as much joy from the museum as I do on a regular basis. Today was made even more special by the fact that we were meeting my parents so they could drop off Anna who had been staying with them the past week.

Four and a half years ago I strolled through the galleries with my new child, unsure of my new role as a parent and not really sure who this little creature was cooing in the stroller before me as we ambled through the artwork killing time between feedings. Today I waited in the museum’s opulent grand foyer for Anna to show up with my parents. I was admiring a piano that the museum staff and others had decorated in memory of Art Tatum’s 100th birthday (he’s from Toledo, natch) when she came into view. My heart leapt and as I heard her squeal in delight when she saw me. She ran to me and we hugged each other hard and long. Immediately she wanted to head downstairs to make art in the children’s area, which 20 years ago were the very classrooms and studios that I learned how to become a teacher of art. We gathered everyone and headed down to the old School of Design and were bummed to find out that the kid’s area was closed for a class.

Needless to say, we’ll be back. In two weeks Tod and I are heading down sans kids for a “night at the museum” tour of the galleries with flashlights (FOR REALS!!!). The art geek in me is thrilled and knows that Tod and I may be the only adults in a sea of Cub Scouts and Brownies. I am okay with that, and I am okay with the fact that my daughter loves the museum. Eli has yet to see the wonders therein, but I am certain he will soon fall prey to the wily wills and siren songs of the Rembrandts, el Grecos, Van Goghs, and the countless other treasures that have wormed their way into my heart over the past 40 some odd years. I can’t wait.