The first time I visited the Philadelphia Museum of Art was about 13 years ago and it left a permanent mark on me.  It is one of the best museums I have ever been to, not to mention one of the largest housing a stellar contemporary collection including Cy Twombly’s Fifty Days at Iliam and around 10 to 15 Brancusi sculptures.  Almost five years ago I went back to Philly to visit a dear friend and we took in a Duchamp exhibition on a rainy, cold day.  It was one of those special days where everything just seemed to come together.  For the past three years I’ve been going to Philly for business every 3 or 4 months and I finally had a couple of hours to spare in between appointments while I was there this week.  Of course I went back to the museum to see the Léger exhibit that everyone was speaking so highly of as well as a Surrealist show with some epic Salvador Dalí.  What I wasn’t expecting to see, however, was a new exhibition by Barbara Chase-Riboud that completely and totally floored me.  Titled the Malcolm X Steles, over 40 works of art from the US and Europe were on display that included skeins of wool and silk yarn dripping from giant cast bronze sculptures and detailed charcoal drawings, all referencing “artistic, cultural, and political experiences” that were both personal and global. This was my first time seeing Riboud’s work and I felt so lucky to be in its presence.  The colors, the textures, and the heaviness of the pieces both figuratively and physically made a huge impact.  Photos were allowed so I was able to snap a few of my favorite sculptures below.

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