Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Forth Worth, Texas

Friday, January 16 - Sunday, January 18, 2015

We had booked a flight to Mexico City, but had to change planes in Dallas, Texas. Rather than continue on the same day, which meant arriving in Mexico around midnight, we decided to stay in Fort Worth for two nights and use the extra day to visit the Kimbell Art Museum and the local botanical garden.

During the flight, I was struck by a pattern of crop circles way below.

Getting out of the Dallas airport and finding our way to the train station took forever, thanks to poor signage and conflicting advice from different locals. I think we must have circled the various terminals several times before we managed to get on the right bus to the station, which is in the middle of nowhere on the fringe of the vast airport facility.

Once on the train however, it was an efficient ride into Fort Worth, where we were met at the station by the woman whose room we had rented through The room, with bathroom attached, was on the main floor  and had its own entrance, the door to the left of the main house.We found it very comfortable for our two-night stay.

 On the Saturday morning, our hostess kindly drove us to the Kimbell Art Museum and dropped us at the entrance, beside a striking sculpture.


 The art collection occupies two buildings. The first, designed by Louis Kahn, comprises a series of long barrel vaults running east to west which allow great light into the interior. Courtyards with reflecting pools separate it from a more conventional but equally attractive building, designed by Renzo Piano.

Children seemed to be enjoying the water and the open spaces,

but a small inside courtyard was empty except for its permanent resident.

After viewing the exhibitions, we walked across another plaza to the Modern Art Museum, designed by Tadao Ando, admiring a sculpture by Richard Serra as we approached the entrance.

 Our plan was to have lunch in their elegant restaurant before taking in the art, and we just managed to get one of their last tables for two.

Views from the restaurant looked back at the adjoining facade.

To have three buildings together by architects of such international stature is quite remarkable and demonstrates how much wealth there is in Texas.

We also visited the Museum of Western Art not far away and enjoyed it equally. Walking there took us past the Will Rogers Memorial Center, another dramatic piece of architecture from another era.

After all this, our last destination, the Fort Worth Botanical Garden was a bit of a disappointment. In all fairness, it was the middle of winter and Fort Worth had just experienced a couple of weeks of unusually cold temperatures. I did admire an urn overflowing with ivy,

...but otherwise there was little to see, except a quotation whose message struck a chord with me,

... especially since it was attributed to a man who was the co-founder and former president of the Texas Native Plant Society. Sounds like a man with a balanced perspective.

Having walked to the point of exhaustion by now, we were glad to take a cab back to our accommodation at the end of the afternoon.
The following day, we headed back to the airport to continue to our original destination: Mexico.