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17 March 2002 @ 03:23 am
wanderings  
My mom is in town for a few days, so I went up to meet her and my uncle Bobby and Maureen and David at MoMA. And managed to be unable to find the big public parking garage after several passes. Somehow between my last Bound trip and now I've gotten my mental map skewed. And SF is a bitch to drive in when you don't know where you are going, with the no left turn streets and the oneways. Ended up parking in the MoMA garage, which was more expensive but _there_.

We had lunch at the cafe and then went to check out the Eva Hesse exhibit, which is worthwhile and very well staged. My favorites were her midperiod stuff -- where she was doing paintings that reminded me of Cornell's memory boxes, except in 2d, abstracted body parts in divided boxes -- and her late period stuff, which is these wonderful organic-looking fiberglass forms, Chihuly but with more anarchism. I was especially charmed by how she made one of them: throwing molten fiberglass at wires strung in her studio.

Mom and Bob wanted to go look at art galleries, so I arranged to meet them at the restaurant for dinner, and went off to check out the Yerba Buena gallery. Still had time to burn, and Chapeau is in the Avenues, so I decided to explore the Presidio a bit, having never done more than drive through it. It's interesting, with all the abandoned buildings; if I was a teenager still, I'd be sneaking around late at night to break in. Always loved abandoned buildings, with their frozen time and little mysteries.

Discovered the West Coast Memorial, which is for those lost in pacific waters in WWII but 'not memorialized elsewhere'. I suppose they might be a little miffed, being categorized as the leftovers, the ones not remembered at the Punchbowl or Arizona or Guadacanal. But it's a simple and serene monument on a hillside overlooking the ocean, so I sat for a while in the westering sun and studied the names, which had the accidental music that lists of American names always make, with their thousand mother tongues. And found myself startled into unexpected tears.

I think all war memorials should have the names. You can take your winged victories or grieving mothers, your triumphant flag raisings or your weary soldiers. The names are all that really matters.