Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Walters art museum

The Walters Art Museum is a great Baltimore attraction. I have a particular love for art and the history which it supplies the world. Since arriving to Loyola College I have wanted to get off campus to see the many art museums Baltimore has to offer. The problem was last year I didn’t have a car. Even with taking two semesters or art history I never reach my destination of the art museum circle. This year has taken a turn for the better; much better. So far in this semester I have been to the Visionary Museum, the Baltimore Art Museum print room and the Walters Art Gallery with my teacher as our personal guide. Each museum has been extremely different but affected me differently.

Since I had really wanted to see what the Walters had to offer, last weekend some of my peers from my Northern European Renaissance class and our teacher ventured down Charles Street to the Walters. This was also my first time driving around Mt. Vernon area. The George Washington monument was pretty neat to see up close. I liked how the traffic circle was old cobbles stone bricks. The street we parked on had a nice little garden patch. It was nice to see some trees where in Baltimore there aren’t many city parks with a lot of green space. The Walters was my only destination planned for trip to the Mt Vernon area.

After I was done my day at the Walters, I fortunate enough to expand my wonderful day when I stumbled down a flight of steps. I was shocked to have discovered such a unique looking place. What is sold in Red Emma’s is slight to the people who inhabit the space. Red Emma’s is a relaxing bookstore and coffeehouse that serves fair trade coffee, vegan munchies and organic food. This is not your typical bookstore; it is even funkier than The Evergreen. Red Emma’s was my fabulous finding for the day. Along with a variety of liberal reading the shop focuses on radical politics and changing culture. Making the economics and politics of our society more just became a noticeable concern for the worker owned collective after only a brief visit. With the three tiny tables, one small coffee bar and three computers, the books hardly fit in the underground shop. The atmosphere and the structure of the bookshop made the space feel more

Being in Red Emma’s made me look at the judgments made on people just by the clothes they wear and the places they hang out. Red Emma’s inspired me even more than the art I had studied earlier that day. When I stepped into the bookstore with my North Face jacket and UGGS I thought I was going to die with from all the glares that came my way. Observing the people that were occupying the bookstore was mostly the artsy or hippie type. Many of the men had wacky haircuts and dresses in tight jeans, with almost everyone I saw having visible tattoos. The style of the hair and the clothes they wear might be a lot different but that doesn’t mean our views are significantly different. I am a big advocator for social justice and poverty in Baltimore but it might not look like it by the way I dress. Just browsing the books I thought how interesting Red Emma’s was and my connection to it. I want to be more artsy, carefree, and revolutionary. I find myself stuck in too many norms here at Loyola. Feeling out of place actually felt kind of good for once in Red Emma’s. I know it is my own personal perception and judgment but I think most of those customers in the coffeehouse are extremely intelligent and passionate about what they do in life. I find I am attracted to those types of people. I am very intrigued and I really like to gain knowledge from all type of sources.

Red Emma’s gave me the feeling of excitement and intellectual stimulation. It was as if I wanted to read every book on the shelves because I knew they would all be challenging and resourceful. I enjoy people and places that are out of the ordinary Loyola scene. What is interesting at Red Emma’s is that finding liberal gurus isn’t that out of the norm for Baltimore. This just proves the point made about the Loyola bubble. I hope I can concert my efforts into meeting some radically charged individual living in Baltimore. I realized art I can look at anytime but Red’ Emma’s is what I am looking for in life; something out of the ordinary.

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