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This is mz second daz in Munich, and I'm tzping this on a German kezboard that transposes the letters y and z. Okay, Now I'm getting the hang of it. Spent several hours in the Alte Pinakothek, an enormous 19th Century building with a vast painting collection assembled by the Bavarian aristocracy (Duke Wilhelm IV, King Ludwig I, and others). In addition to canvases by Brueghel, Holbein, Cranach, Bosch, Ter Borch, Van Ruisdael, and some very cinematic Rubens on permanent view, the museum was hosting a traveling exhibition of Murillo kinderleben (tykes shooting craps, eating fruit rinds, picking lice out of each other's hair).
Munich architecture is almost mediterranean--classical buildings painted lemon, ochre, raw siena, and every other conceivable shade of yellow, arranged in long plazas reminiscent of the scuola metafisica paintings of de Chirico (who lived here in his formative years). The city is clean, organized, and slum-free; every street has a clearly marked bike path and most buildings have bike racks. Advertising tends towards the smutty, however, much more than in the States. The ice cream menu at the place where we ate lunch today featured a drawing of a hottie smearing quadruple scoops on her breasts. An ad for a digital camera has a bikini-clad tart clutching the product at midriff level and staring provocatively the viewer; the caption reads "What Verona is holding in her hand gets much bigger." (Next to the ad is an example of a photo-enlargement.)
Galleries visited included Architekturgalerie E.V. (showing designs and models by the Dutch architecture firm MVRDV), Philomene Magers (slightly glue-damaged John Baldessari photos from the '70s), Michael Zink (a nice video installation by Ewan McDonald in the basement and paintings of manga kiddies by Yoshitomo Nara--one of the not-so-interesting SUPERFLAT artists--upstairs), and Francoise Heitsch (multilayered, perspectivally ambiguous photo-installations of combs, chairs, ironing boards, plastic trays and other domestic bricabrac by Berlin artist Catrin Otto).