Saturday, 19 January 2013

Stunning art and architecture

You sensed this the moment you stepped into the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia -  both stunning art and architecture.  While Bill Reid's creation sculpture, "The Raven and the First Men", is the monumental centrepiece, the wow factor started right at the entrance to the museum.

"The Raven and the First Men" by Bill Reid (laminated yellow cedar)
This awesome carved panel with masks of the sun and the moon welcomed you at the entrance.  And you just knew that it would be good.

Very close to the carved panel is this remarkable Haida cedar bentwood chest (circa 1870)

You turned to move forward but stood still, gawking at this stunning Great Hall...

There was no other choice, you had to see this...

Grand and towering...and yet, when you turned into the Bill Reid rotunda, you found yourself staring at this most exquisite carving - the raven box.  Your jaw dropped further...

and on and on it went
This, believe it or not, is a "house dish" - for feasts.  I think I remember seeing something like this in New Zealand, in the land of the Maoris.

Before you leave, you had to go back to the Great Hall one more time - just to sit there and gape.

Then take yourself outside to the log house

Turn back to look at the outside of the museum and you'd notice the resemblance...

almost a mirror image - the modern museum and the log house.

How clever of Arthur Erickson!  Wow! 

Sunday, 6 January 2013

More art deco in Vancouver

Another surprising find is the City Hall in Vancouver - the entrance is impressive, the inside a little drab.  But there are the characteristic brass elevator doors and if you look up at the mirrored ceiling, you get a remarkable reflected view of the architectural features.

Captain George Vancouver at the front of the building, pointing out the magnificent view of the city from his vantage point

Saturday, 5 January 2013

Art deco in Vancouver

I was in Vancouver a few weeks ago and was surprised to discover an art deco treasure in the city.  This is the Marine Building, apparently considered one of the great art deco buildings in the world.  Completed in 1930 right after the Wall Street crash that triggered the Great Depression, many of the offices were left empty.  In 1933, the $2.3 million building was sold for only $900,000.  But it remains a classic example of art deco in the city.

The lobby, surprisingly small for a building this size, is considered a masterpiece.  You can see for yourself below the stunning entrance to it, the floor, the ceiling, the solid brass elevator doors...

Stained glass above the lobby

Solid brass elevator doors

The corridor to the side entrance

In-laid floor with the zodiac

The mailbox!

The elevator walls inlaid with 12 kinds of hardwood 

You can see the intricate cornice of the lobby from the second floor

Looking towards the entrance to the lobby - note the clock with sea animals for  hours

The Marine Building on the outside