20 November 2012

The Huntington

My trip to LA was all about museums and food (apart from the wedding).  I've heard about the Huntington for years and I can't believe it took me this long to visit.  It's one of the most beautiful museums/gardens I've ever seen.  If I didn't have to meet up with Lauren for lunch, I could have spent all day wandering the grounds.

The Huntington is a large property full of botanical gardens, museums and a library.  It is one of those museums founded in the early 20th century by a very rich man who thankfully appreciated beautiful things.

I started by walking through the grounds which includes a large assortment of cacti, rose gardens, Japanese tea garden, fountains and statues. 

The Japanese garden was so precise.  It amazes me how much work must go into them.

I loved the museums which is housed in a few different buildings, including the residence.  I slowed down to look at the original manuscripts and could have spent hours looking at Birds of America by John Audubon.  It consists of 435 hand-colored, life-size prints of 497 bird species, made from engraved copper plates of various sizes depending on the size of the image. The work contains just over 700 North American bird species.  Very few of the books exist as a whole because they've been taken apart to sell the prints separately.

Orchids in the Conservatory.

The library in the main house.

This is a picture of Lady Emma Hamilton by George Romney.  I was surprised to see it since I recently watched the film That Hamilton Woman which was apparently Churchill's favorite film.

I think this is the ugliest baby statue I've ever seen.  I really tried to get a good photo of it but the lighting was working against me.  It looked like an old man or Brad Pitt in that movie where he is an old man as a baby.