Royal Academy photo: Guardian

Did you hear Christiane Amanpour on Desert Island Discs? (Brilliant – and still available to listen to, HERE). The former war correspondent, now CNN anchor and chief international correspondent was talking about balancing work and life. When work involved reporting from a war zone: taking holidays, surrounding herself with love and giving her brain a rest was the balance technique she employed.

NEW YORK, NY - DECEMBER 05: Journalist Christiane Amanpour poses for a photo during the premiere of "In the Land of Blood and Honey" at the School of Visual Arts on December 5, 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images)
Christiane Amanpour  (Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images)

Which is what I plan to do today. Mr That’s Not My Age has a day off, and after a book-writing blitz this week, I’m taking an impromptu break, too. I need to give my brain a rest and go and be inspired. The Abstract Expressionism exhibition at the Royal Academy should do the trick and then possibly another look at the excellent Georgia O’Keefe exhibition at Tate Modern. We might even take in some Frieze Art Fair stuff and buy a new toaster, on the way. Living it up.

19 thoughts on “Going to an exhibition and giving the brain a rest

  1. In between jobs, and needing a change from job hunting I went over to the Georgia O’Keefe exhibition yesterday – relaxing and engrossing and great to go first thing when there weren’t too many people around.

  2. Go! Go to the RA exhibition. It is fantastic,best thing i’ve seen in ages and a total anitdote to stress. I think going to a gallery is one of the best ways of rebalancing life.

  3. There’s a lot to be said for taking a much needed break. I love art, and it’s such a wonderful balance with writing and work.
    When I look at art, I’m able to access parts of myself where words DON’T live, and a different part of my brain is stimulated.

  4. I did just this last Friday. was just what I needed and hope the same for you. Inspired by a new (to me) painter, Michael Andrews, at the exhibition at the Gett Center, London Calling, I came back to my studio and completed a piece I had been grappling with.

  5. I’m totally with you on this. A good exhibition of a live performance are the best way to re-charge and put everything into perspective. I get to the stage when I NEED a cultural fix. That said, I haven’t been to the O’Keefe yet. Memo to self, must do.
    Enjoy your day.

  6. I always enjoyed a quiet, early turn around the National Gallery. Calming and puts you in your place. Then you can go out and get on with the rest of the world. And…buying kitchen goods. Sometimes, I used to go to John Lewis and just look at all the towels on display. You can have enough of being in the zeitgeist. I find.

  7. Oh yes, I’m having a whole month off between completing studies and starting a job. A brain holiday has been much needed and rather blissful. A trip to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park next week will give me a dose of Art and Nature – both of which feed my soul

  8. I loved the O’Keeffe exhibition (currently reading a biography of her) and have tickets for the RA. For me, it’s so stimulating and thought provoking to see these things. We are so lucky to be in / near such a fab city. Enjoy!

  9. Looks like a fabulous exhibition and quite a few reviews here in the US on it. I am so envious that you will have the David Hockney retrospective next year at the Tate. I am determined to come to London to see it. Enjoy your brain rest.

  10. the Georgia O’Keefe exhibition at Tate Modern is excellent. I especially liked the juxtaposition in each section of contemporary photographs by Steiglitz and Paul Strand for example alongside her depiction in paintings and drawings and watercolours of the same settings. I was there recently about four in the afternoon. A perfect time as it was uncrowded. If you go check out the views from the top of the new extension tower viewing deck. It provides another sense of London vistas.

  11. The Georgia O’Keefe exhibition was excellent. An eye opener for me as I only knew about her flowers. There’s so much more to her than that and I really did engage with a couple of her works, so much so that I’m tempted to go and have another look at them! There’s something so special about a good exhibition…

  12. Maybe don’t go for a ‘rest’ but for stimulation of a different kind. What you see will influence one’s work in new ways if you are engaged in looking. btw, your blog is wonderful and have passed it on to many friends in the US.

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