The Nasher Museum of Art

BED Water Tower
ME/WE Water Tower
 Over Martin Luther King weekend, my parents and I took a little road trip to see a few colleges in North Carolina. Duke University was our second tour of the day. We had gotten to Durham a few hours early for our campus tour, but we were exhausted. The weather was cold, bleak and rainy, so naturally our spirits were low. By some saving grace, the woman at the visitors center directed us to the Nasher Museum of Art. At first we were in search of food, but of course art was on the agenda after were were caffeinated. 

In my life, I've been to many many many terrific cafes all over the world, but the cafe at the Nasher Art Museum was nothing short of phenomenal. The aesthetic of their food was simple. I am a firm believer that simpler is better. I had a their "Red, White and Green Panini". On that grey day, the ingredients of my sandwich were so fresh and that it took me by surprise and the warmth of my tea wrapped me like a hug. I don't know if it was the little sprigs of basil or the juicy tomato or the fresh bread that made this panini so amazing, but after savoring each bite my head was clear and I could finally concentrate on the scenery.

I hadn't realized before, but the art museum was nearly empty. Besides a few students having lunch with their professors and an older couple, the only noises that could be heard were the sounds of silverware on plates and drops on the roof. Art museums are great, but empty art museums completely change the viewers perspective. It becomes a more intimate and one-on-one experience with the works. 

The Nasher Museum has an amazing collection of works from all over the world from many different time periods - something to satisfy the taste for antiquity or modernity. After spending a decent amount of time in each gallery my favorite works were Chilean artist Iván Navarro's This Land is Your Land water towers. His inspiration came from the water towers of New York, which were a common sight after his move from Chile. Of course the visual experience of having water towers in an empty museum was intriguing, but I walked under the towers out of child like curiosity and looked up. At the base of the tower words were created in neon. These words come from the artist's personal experiences as an immigrant and are a metaphorical reminder of freedom and democracy in America. 

The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University gave me an aesthetic experience, but the simplicity in their food and presentation of art allowed a theme of comfort and warmth to speak for itself. I don't think I could have appreciated these messages as much as I did if the weather wasn't a contrasting bleak and grey. 

If you want to explore more of the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, click here


Château Hopping in the Loire Valley / Photo Diary

Where: The beautiful town of Langeais and the Château de Langeais and the Château de Villandry in the Loire Valley. Of course for lunch, there was a stop made at a picturesque winery in Bourgueil for lunch and a wine tasting. 

What: mostly getting lost wandering around the elegant French gardens of the Château de Villandry and admiring everything from exotic flowers to immaculately trimmed hedges to vegetable gardens to getting lost in a classic garden maze, admiring the grapes of the winery especially since they were not more than tiny buds who in the autumn would crated to become an esteemed French wine in no less than five years, eating the most delicious and homemade tarte aux pommes ever, and wandering around the food and flower market in Langeais right next to the château and cathedral as it would be in medieval times 

stay tuned for more adventures in France and of course more food pics!


Right Now

Bonjour mes amis!

I feel like I am starting over with this little blog in a way. To be honest, having this little web address in my life has really been the only constant thing in my life for quite some time. If you look at my first post (it's probably when I was just about to be a freshman in high school) to now, everything has changed. Schools. Friends. Family. Ambitions. Goals. Dreams. What I like to eat for breakfast or what lotion I put on before bed. Everything is different. 

As for blogging goes, my creative output has been zero, and I know that. I've kept up with blogs that I have always loved and then some, but this little blog has been pushed to the back burner. To be  completely honest, I felt like anything that I put on the internet wouldn't be good enough. That and coupled with an insane amount of change in my life, I chose to go to bed thirty minutes earlier (or sometimes aimlessly scrolling through the internet) than to take that time and collect date and write a blog post. I'm changing that. 

Ready for the real wakeup moment? I am seventeen and my eighteenth birthday is fast approaching, well it's in October, but still. I'm going to be a senior at the end of this school year and college at the end of next. I need to take the SAT and finish my college visits and write my college apps and build my resume. This past junior year I have been doing a lot of thinking. I think about the future and about the past, about what could be and what I want or need. Notice anything missing? I am not thinking about the now or what I have. I am always constantly in a losing battle with thinking about anything other than right in this very moment and getting ahead of myself in mindset or doing nothing at all. Writing these words, right now is probably this first time in a long time that I am thinking about the now.

And from ignoring the present and dwelling in the past or overwhelming myself with the future, my life has become one giant knot that I am scrambling to undo, almost racing time but not quite. There is so much I need to do before I go to college and start the next chapter of my life. So, on my little corner of the internet as much as this is for you to get to know me, I am getting to know myself as well.

Welcome to the my new journey where I focus upon myself in the present to help the person I will be in the future. Cheers to mystery and adventure and life!!




Sometimes it completely baffles me how a southern gal like me could be in so in love with a city like this. Maybe its in the name - New York City - kind of cheesy and crowded with tourists and I *heart* NY t-shirts. But for me its something different, its an epicenter of inspiration and lust. I found myself stumbling around this beautiful city not more than a week ago, bundled in layers ready to face the blistering and torturous cold of that frigid Valentine's Day weekend. Something then just clicked, I am literally 100% beyond in love with this city, bagels aside. Why?

1. New York City is a place where dreams come to bloom, or to die. But in either case it's not the end result in which I am in love with ... its the part of ambition that I like. Its the blinding sense of not caring what the outcome is, the action is simply being done out of passion. Just standing, facing the track and listening to the whirring of the subway past me got me thinking - everyone is here because they are doing something that they love. The energy is something that cannot even be put into words, its just something that one has to breathe in and feel. The energy is inspiring. 

2. As a self-diagnosed art freak New York City is the perfect place to come to look for a cure. Of course I have done my fair share of time in the MoMA practically in tears that I am standing just before Van Gogh's Starry Night (classic), Picasso's Les Demoiselles d' Avignon or Rothko's No. 3 or No. 13, but what amazes me about the city is that everything is art. I have visited both in the summer and the dead of winter, and at both times there is nothing that is more amazing than seeing how the people dress - art in the form of fashion. A few summers ago what was à la mode was sleep camisoles, ripped boyfriend jeans and dainty d'Orsay heels. This past winter was Adidas Superstar sneaks or Stuart Weizmann over the knee boots snuggled with a J. Crew coat with fur lining the hood.  I always come back from the city gleaming with inspiration from the fashion and when I am in the city I like to try out the fashion. Case in point, the New Yorker in me bought a pair of Adidas sneaks and trekked all over the city in them. Now that I am in South Carolina, it's a little tricky pairing these edgy shoes with my soft, southern style. I have no regrets. I can't forget to mention Broadway. Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The Lion King and many others that I have under my shows I have seen list. This past time I saw an off Broadway show and I could not tell you what it was about to save my life. Blue Man Group was completely different than anything that I have ever seen before. But even though I literally cannot tell you what it was about, I loved it. This sort of ambiguity from the show is what I think made it part of my most loved New York experiences ever. Everything about the city is art - the rushing people, the flow of traffic, the man playing his saxophone on the subway, the cooperate dame on the arm of her Armani-suited Wall Street beau, the small Italian restaurant that has been making the same family recipes for over 50 years - everything. 

3.  While New York has a claim of the cultural capital of the United States; juxtaposed, in this city I have never felt more proud to be an American. Deep in the heart of the financial district, just below the soaring 1 World Trade Center rests the reflecting pools and museum of the Twin Towers. Inside the huge museum, a respectful hush falls upon the visitors. While the place is big enough to hold a rock concert, it is almost as if though visitors left their voices with their coats at the check in. Every person here seeks to connect to this moment in American history. Some have loved ones who's lives were lost that fateful day, some are foreign tourists interested in the twisted scraps of metal that came from the fall of the amazing architectural feat, and me? I was looking for closure. I was only three years old on September 11th and the only thing I remember about that day was my mom picking me up from pre-school early and taking me home. I have never truly felt the power of this day in American history until then. Something clicked, but I have never loved my country more since that day. This still young country has been through a lot, seen a lot and helped other a lot. But in times of domestic struggle, my country comes together as one, a world power fallen for a day. The humility of my country is why I love this country. What a great place to call home - the land of Washington and crazy politics, the place where you can see famous artists from all over the world and see artists on the street sketching ongoing people, the country of bizarre food combinations and super sized meals but the one fully plunging forward in the juice cleanse and yoga classes. This country is full of juxtapositions and contrasts. This city has made me realize why I love being an American. 
© Kira Tabor | All rights reserved.