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Trip Report A Mini-Trip to the Walters

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After finding out that the Walters Art Museum ( http://thewalters.org/ ) in Baltimore Md. was hosting a one-day exhibit of my county's high school art students, and since my next door neighbor's work is included, I decided to take a drive over.

It took about one hour from my house 20 miles south of Annapolis Md.. I took Rte. 97 to Baltimore's Beltway West (495) and got off within a mile on Rte. 295 toward Baltimore (Baltimore/Washington Parkway). Just before the Ravens Stadium, I take a right onto Hamburg Street (there are also signs there for ML King Blvd. and Rte. 85-you keep right) and over to Charles which is one-way north and will take me directly to the Walters. I stay to the left of the Washington Monument. You should see the Walters on the left. Take the first left turn you can and go over to the next block and turn left again. Stay right and you will see a parking lot for the Walters (corner of Cathedral and Centre). It's $10.00 but if you get your parking ticket validated by the guard just as you enter the museum, you'll get $4.00 back. Parking here puts you directly across from the back entrance and the floor with café/museum shop and, today, a special exhibit of Richard Caton Woodville. Entry is free to this museum but not to special exhibits ($10 for adults).

By design I am one hour early for the student exhibit to take advantage of a re-visit and decide to see the special Woodville exhibit as well. Woodville ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Caton_Woodville ) was from Baltimore and his works reflected life in "Hon City" as well as the political/social environment of his times. I was not familiar with Woodville but enjoyed the peek at America his exhibit presented. Also, the Walters invited Baltimore high school students to do their interpretation of the Woodville look at America. "New Eyes on America: Student Response" is the title of that mini exhibit. There are a few pieces of 2-D work but much is done digitally on film. Two listening pieces per TV set are available for the digital presentations. A new generation of artists!

I took the time to stroll through the 19th Century Art section. One of the things I enjoy about the Walters is that it's small enough for my breathing-impaired lungs. An intimate room has one or 2 pieces of Hassan, Pissaro, Sisley, Boudin, Degas (a horse scene), Monet and Manet. An L-shaped wing around this room has several of Ingres, Rousseau, Corot, Millet and a rare woman artist, Rosa Bonheur.

An elevator ride to level 2A takes me directly to the Sculpture Court level. If you enter from Charles St., you will come into this lovely area after some steps. I love to pretend that this is my home. Yellow walls, white statuary and art-filled rooms all around. I don't see my neighbors but her work is one of the best among a very nice group of artwork. One of the adults there told me that the Walters reaches out to various counties each year and I think it's a super idea.

Leaving I turn right on Cathedral and in just a block or 2, right onto Franklin (watch for Rte 40 signs). On Franklin, I stay left and make a left onto N. Greene St. (295) and stay on that street until I reach the Beltway (495) again. Once on the beltway, be aware that the turn off back to 97 is from the left and you have about a mile to get left. Be careful. If traffic looks too heavy, you can, as an alternate, stay on 295 and take route 100 East and it too will take you to 97. When you arrive in Baltimore on 295, you can also just stay straight and turn right onto Centre St. and left into the parking lot. You will pass the 2 ball stadia and traffic can be heavy on game days.

Baltimore is an easy drive to/from Annapolis. If you are visiting, you'd probably be more likely to be staying in Baltimore, but Annapolis is a lovely day trip.

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