The Jewels of London

The real jewels of London won't be found in the crowns of the Royals, but at the British Museum.... Most of the museums in London are free!!

We stopped by the British Museum and the National Gallery.  The British Museum houses numerous treasures from Ancient Egypt, and the National Gallery has some great work by the impressionists--including a stunning work by Van Gogh of his famous sunflowers, and Seraut's pointillism, Bathers at Asnieres.

In addition to the Rosetta Stone, there are a number of artifacts that have somehow made their way from Egypt to England............

We also headed to the National Gallery to see some of the great impressionist works.  One of Vincent Van Gogh's most inspiring paintings of his beloved Sunflowers is at the National Gallery.  I hesitate to put a picture, as it does not do the painting justice.  The depth of this painting is evidenced by the the thick, crusty paint representing the sunflower seeds.  It is truly a masterpiece! Also, Van Gogh painted this painting during one of the hopeful and optimistic periods of his life, which we can see by the hopeful color, yellow, that pervades this painting.

This painting went in Van Gogh's guest room, as Van Gogh was preparing for a visit for his friend and fellow impressionist painter, Paul Gauguin.

Van Gogh fans should read more about the painting here.

Another can't-miss painting at the National Gallery is Seraut's Bathers at Asnieres. This is one of the few paintings that I studied in my art history class that I never saw in person. I was very excited to see it, and it did not disappoint.  I actually "studied" pointillism in third grade when my teacher Taylor Powers introduced it to us.  We even created our own art--using pointillism.

The great thing about pointillism is that the artist lets the viewer's eyes take the final step of bringing the colors together. Again, this is something that is hard to see on a print, but incredible in person.

You can read more about this painting here.