My full-length book, Where We Think It Should Go, can be yours via Octopus Books, Small Press Distribution, or Amazon. We better celebrate these hard copies while we can. When I'm not writing poetry, I teach amazing young people who are blind. I believe in a healthier future.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Here I am at the Apple store adding RAM to my parents' computer. I feel like a real computer nerd. Or just a teenager. This shopping district of Kansas City, The Country Club Plaza, is ridiculously full of touristy types from surrounding states...families oohing and aahing and shopping for back to school clothes. It used to be a more practical neighborhood with grocery stores and dry cleaners and the like. I grew up near here and my parents were always upset as more and more chain stores moved in. I think this was the first shopping mall, where one person/company owned the space and leased it to merchants. We used to come here for Thanksgiving to see the window displays with moving things and lights in the department store windows. There are some neat old Kansas City department stores still in existence, or maybe it's just Halls, but Halls is neat.

I'm now encouraging anyone in surrounding states (that includes Minnesota) to make the trip to Kansas City to see the renovation on the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. It's a really great new building, which I discussed in an earlier post. It's been written up pretty much everywhere. The photo above is from a Kiki Smith installation there, Constellation, on display through October 28th. Although I grew up blocks from the museum and took art classes there and ate lunch there and went there all the time, I had never before seen much of the museum's collection, which had been in storage due to lack of space. Now I get to see some really great abstract expressionist stuff, contemporary stuff, realism. There's an amazing American ceramics collection. There's also a super cool research library, the Spencer Art Reference library with 147,000 volumes open to the public. In the new coffee shop, all disposable containers are made of corn.


LCB said...

The significance of the Country Club Plaza, historically, is that it was the first "shopping center" built in conjunction with a residential development. So we can credit that visionary JC Nichols for all the tandem ripples of mall and subdivision now encircling American cities.

I am so jealous that you are in KC!

Lily said...

oh, corn... Did your meal melt while you were eating it like the forks at my party?

Claire said...

I was just drinking water. We ate lunch in the old part of the museum...they use real plates.

Thanks for the clarification LCB. It's always muddled in my mind.

Adam said...

Shucks. We'll be there next week. When are you leaving?


Claire said...

I just got back to Oakland today. Definitely check out the museum!

Lily said...

By the way, I meant FORK not MEAL. I don't think any meals melted. At least I hope not.