Sunday found us back on the road again, a long traveling day from the Keys north and then back to the west coast, this time to St. Petersburg.
We had an excellent reason to visit St. Petersburg – Magnolia, our Morgan sister ship is there!!! We would get to spend a little time with our dear, dear friends, Anthony and Annette. Haven’t seen them since September when they were in Connecticut, during the almost-hurricane Hermine.
A beautiful day is meant to be spent outdoors. Anthony and Annette took us on a walking tour around the harbor.
Vinoy Park is an 11-acre park located on the downtown waterfront of St. Petersburg, next to the marina. The Vinoy Park Hotel, originally constructed in 1925, sits adjacent to the park and shares its name.
Bike racks are in various places in and around the city, and near the waterfront. “Coast Bike Share” provides on-demand, two-wheeled transportation. With the “Social Bicycles” mobile app and one of their plans (from pay-as-you-go to annual plans), people can grab a bike and get around. Sure wish more cities did this. Boaters would love it.
St. Petersburg is a very nice city (That’s quite a compliment when it comes from someone who doesn’t care for cities.) Walking around was a pleasure.
When you hang around with Anthony and Al, sooner or later there will be ice cream.
Thanks to the wonders of SSB (single side band) radio, we were able to talk with Cori and Dale on Hi-Flight, who are cruising farther south in the Virgin Islands.
Annette and I decided that the Dali Museum would be a nice way to spend the following day. The Dali Museum is dedicated to Salvador Dalí, the famous Spanish artist and surrealist, who is perhaps best known for his painting of melting clocks, The Persistence of Memory, 1931. Full confession here — until this visit, my limited knowledge of Dali was that one famous painting. And also that he was a bit odd and eccentric.
A quote from Dali —
“The fact that I myself, at the moment of painting, do not understand my own pictures, does not mean that these pictures have no meaning; on the contrary, their meaning is so profound, complex, coherent, and involuntary that it escapes the most simple analysis of logical intuition.”
The Dali Museum building, new in 2011, is a rectangular structure of 18-inch thick hurricane-proof walls. The free-form geodesic glass bubble known as the ”enigma.” The “enigma” is constructed from 1,062 glass triangles and honors the geodesic dome on the roof of the Dali museum in Spain.
The inside of the museum is dominated by a spiraling helical staircase of solid concrete that seems to float from the lobby to the upper floors inside of the “enigma” bubble. Its shape pays tribute to Dalí’s lifelong obsession with the structure of DNA. I found the mix of art and science to be very appealing.
My impression of Dali has totally changed. I never knew that Dali was such a talented and versatile artist. He could achieve mastery in whatever style he chose. I reviewed my photos from our tour and found myself contemplating the paintings I had photographed. There were obviously many, many more, but I guess these are the ones that “spoke” to me the most? I wish I could remember more of the symbolism that runs through Dali’s surreal creations, particularly the very large pieces.
In 1923 Dali painted his sister, Ana Maria, in a realistic style. The portrait was well-received by critics. Later, when his relationship with Ana Maria was deteriorating, he altered the painting to include a second upside-down figure in a style inspired by early Cubist portraits.
The loooong title of the next Dali work (below) is also the description of it. “Gala Contemplating the Mediterranean Sea Which at Twenty Meters Becomes the Portrait of Abraham Lincoln (Homage to Rothko).” Gala was his wife and his muse. There’s quite a story to their relationship, but I am skipping that.
Dali was inspired by a Scientific American article about visual perception that raised the question – what is the minimum number of pixels needed to describe a unique human face? The question intrigued Dali so much that he created this portrait of Lincoln using 121 pixels. Again — art and science merge.
Annette and I enjoyed our time in the museum, but our guys began to suffer from art fatigue.
Outdoors, the grounds of the museum continue to be works of art. One of my favorites is this golden rectangle built into the patio/walkway (My inner math geek is showing.) Considered to be the most visually satisfying of geometric forms, this proportion has long been seen as pleasing to the eye. The Golden Ratio exists in mathematics, science, nature, art, and architecture.
We ate at Nueva Cantina (That Mexican Place) for our last dinner together. After our recent Mexican experience, we wondered how authentic the food would taste at an American Mexican restaurant. We were not disappointed. Good choice, Bakers!
Visiting with Anthony and Annette was the perfect way to end our 3-week Mexico/Florida trip. We got to sleep on a sailboat again!!!! WooHoo and more! Thank you, Magnolia and crew. 😉
Although my 15 blog posts for our January trip took me over a month to finish, it is finally done. We packed a lot of memory-making into those 3 weeks and enjoyed every moment. Time for a blog break, for you and me both. 😉