Days before my birthday, I spent some time at the MoMA with two of my friends, the three of us hoping to see some incredible work. And if we didn't, well we'd enjoy the architecture. Thankfully my friend was a member, so she got us in for a fraction of the normally pricey entrance fee. Perhaps it was the summer season, but needless to say, while we did see inspired work, we had to work our way up to it, literally. The exhibits improved upon ascension.

Olafur Eliasson's work caused my friends to turn monochromatic.

The first two floors, consisted mainly of video installations and what looked like student projects (but weren't) with very few exceptions. Sadly I felt, floors 1 and 2 were a waste of time. Not what one would expect in such prized fine art real estate. The third floor featured installations by Olafur Eliasson. Interesting. I'm not a big fan of installation art in general, but I was able to grasp Mr. Eliasson's work, primarily because the ideas and executions were simple and elegant.

MoMA Guard

Upon reaching the fourth floor, we discovered what I was most familiar with--painting--and MoMA's permanent collection. Many of them I've seen before, but always comforted by their presence. So at this time, I pulled out my sketchbook, settled down, and drew the scene around me.

Just as we were about to head out, we poked around the gift shop. Strangely enough I was happier browsing the various tchotchkes inspired by good design, rather than muddling through the first few exhibits. I spotted a really cool perpetual calendar, so my friend offered to pick it up for me as a birthday gift!

Perpetual coolness.

After paying we were ready to exit, until we noticed that floor five featured a preview show open to members only. Since my friend was one of them, we happily proceeded to explore: Dali: Painting and Film. It was like being on the list and getting into the most popular night club in town...sort of.

While I'm not Dali's biggest fan, I certainly admire his talent and welcomed the exhibit like a breath of fresh air, and relieved that I would leave the MoMA feeling satisfied. It was a very well presented show with Dali's early film work on display, paintings that inspired the films, and his set design for the Hollywood film, Spellbound. All in all, they were some of the finest Dali paintings I have ever seen.

By the time we finally headed out, the rain came, in buckets. My (member) friend treated me to a MoMA umbrella as a birthday gift and we happily ventured out in the rain for coffee and cake.