The new Greek and Roman Galleries are overwhelming! More Greek than Roman objects though. It is worthwhile perusing the preceding link down to two YouTube clips; although the 45 artifacts shown online mostly do not include the ones I especially liked. But not to despair, I found out that one is allowed to take photos, and on my next visit – all by my little self – I will take my camera along and do some more reporting here. I've taken copious notes already, so I will find them easily. Then there is a mezzanine which displays Etruscan art, with a life-size bronze chariot – the colors in the above photo though are misleading, the chariot has the typical bluish-green patina, and in the current display it is dramatically preceded by two lions who seem to draw it. The mezzanine also holds the amazing Greek and Roman Study Collection, containing 3,500 objects! There are no labels; instead there are computer screens along the wall where one can call up each item. The windows of the Etruscan Art gallery overlook the central court of the galleries, the former fountain court, which older residents of the area may remember as the Fountain Court Café with the reflecting pool.
The Turner retrospective, J. M. W. Turner, which closes next weekend and ends it U.S. tour, is simply breathtaking: all you wanted to know about Turner and more. And like so many of his contemporaries, Turner had a fascination with the Ancient world, its history, ruins, and mythology. We saw among others: Snow Storm: Hannibal and his Army Crossing the Alps; The Bay of Baie, with Apollo and Sybil; Study for Dido Directing the Equipment of the Fleet, Regulus; The Decline of the Carthaginian Empire; Ulysses Deriding Polyphemus – Homer's Odyssey; Roman Forum with Rainbow (a watercolor, and strangly enough the rainbow is white); Agrippina Landing with the Ashes of Germanicus; and an unfinished painting, Europa and the Bull.
One entire room was dedicated to The Burning of the Houses of Parliament; shown are a number of watercolor studies for two major oil paintings, one of which was on display: The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons, 16th October, 1834. The other painting may be seen here.
Turner's late works were based on Goethe's Theory of Colors. Two paintings on display are labeled Shade and Darkness: The Evening of the Deluge and Light and Color: The Morning after the Deluge – Moses Writing the Book of Genesis, respectively. Both can be seen on Wikimedia Commons: Shade and Darkness, Light and Color (Moses can be discerned very lightly in the center).