Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Cezanne and below

The parking garage

Cezanne and below

Rosa 'All Ablaze' blazes cherry red in Burke Brothers' Tuscany exhibit, accenting classic Italian elements with bright flowers. (Ron Tarver / Staff photographer)
Rosa 'All Ablaze' blazes cherry red in Burke Brothers' Tuscany exhibit, accenting classic Italian elements with bright flowers. (Ron Tarver / Staff photographer)

This morning was one of those times - and I have many - when I feel so lucky to do what I do for a living. I was over at the Philadelphia Museum of Art to take a look at some of the Cezanne paintings in the "Cezanne and Beyond" exhibit, which runs till May 17. I'm working on a fascinating story about the role Cezanne's gardens in Provence played in his art, and I wanted to see certain paintings before I start writing. The museum staff allowed me to go in before the place officially opened, and for about 45 minutes I was pretty much alone with this fabulous collection of the works of Cezanne and 18 other artists who were profoundly influenced by him. Seven security guards were visible from every vantage point, so I wasn't really alone, but it felt that way. Soon two groups came in for tours but they were quiet. Word to the wise: the museum's new 400-car, set-into-the-hillside, underground parking garage is open for business but isn't yet properly signed. There's no indication that "T" stands for Terrace, which is the level at which you enter the museum. I can imagine elevators full of people going up and down trying to figure it out. (This is a view of the unfinished "roof" of the garage, which will be landscaped this spring.) Parking is $10 for four hours but if you're a member of the museum, it's only $8. Yet another reason (besides free admission and tickets to special exhibits, which in this case are $22) to join. If you don't get your ticket validated, you get zinged for $26 and if you stay longer than four hours, you pay $2/hour from then on. Next time, I may look elsewhere for a spot. 

We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog
Ginny Smith, a Philadelphia native, joined the Inquirer at 1985. After stints as both reporter and editor in the city and suburbs, she’s been happily writing – and learning - about gardening full time since 2006. She’s won two silver medals of achievement from the national Garden Writers Association and in 2011, Bartram’s Garden honored her with its Green Exemplar award for her stories about “the region’s deeply rooted horticultural history, cultural attractions and bountiful gardens.” She plays in her own – mostly - bountiful garden in East Falls. Reach Virginia A. at .

Virginia A. Smith Inquirer Staff Writer
Latest Videos:
Also on
letter icon Newsletter