Saturday, July 16, 2011

Ashmolean Museum!

Yesterday we went to the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford, and it was very impressive!

One thing we have noticed with museums in Britain is that they don't mess around, they have really cool stuff!  They had statues, sculptures, textiles, paintings, china, tapestries, musical instruments, and so much more.  Their collections were from all over the world from many different time periods, and as Brian has said, there was a heavy emphasis on the theme of "East meets West".

The architecture was very interesting, and I found it quite pleasing both visually and functionally.  The preservation of the Classical exterior, with the modern interior was a well done blend, and the center stairwell did a great job of providing natural lighting as well as easy movement from floor to floor.

I will say that the organization was not the best for people interested in learning about the various historical periods.  Items were grouped based on what they looked like, not when or where they came from.  I thought it made it nice for people who might want to research a specific art area, but they would still be frustrated with the lack of historical context or any hint of chronology.

Overall I very much enjoyed our visit to the Ashmolean Museum.  There was a special exhibit on Alexander the Great that we didn't go to, and if I have time I intend to visit again just for that.

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