Streams

The Mental Detox: Art at the Met

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

If there's one thing I've learned since completing my 21-day detox program a week ago, it's that one's mind can become as bloated and overweight and sluggish as one's body. And so I took my mind (and the body it's attached to) to the Metropolitan Museum of Art this morning.

I hit my tried-and-trues, my favorites, in the 19th century-European painting galleries — William Bouguereau's "Breton Brother and Sister" from 1871, Henri Regnault's "Salome," and Jules Baptiste-Lepage's "Joan of Arc." They always instill a sense of deep pleasure.  

That viewing pleasure was a bit marred by the long, boisterous line for the blockbuster show about the late British clothing designer Alexander McQueen, which marched straight through the galleries where my favorite paintings are hung. 

Still, seeing these paintings are like visiting an old, dear friend, and it was a delight to be in the cool, mostly hushed, quiet of the Met on this sunny, 90 degree-summer day.

Earlier, I was at my doctor's office for my annual physical. I've lost 10 pounds. My skin is clearer and tighter. The dark circles under my eyes have diminished — they'd go away if I got more than six hours' sleep!) I feel calmer, more present and more clear-minded. I feel, in a word, great.

It was nice to share that with my Metropolitan Museum friends.

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