"I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in. "
~George Washington Carver
|LOVE the cow.|
|Near Rodeo Dr. |
Parking for the Greystone is above the Mansion. Wear clothes suitable for a civilized hike- this park is the Hills part of Beverly Hills. Also:be advised- only the grounds are open to the public.
From the Friends of Greystone's Internet site, where the provenance of the home and garden is listed "Greystone’s exterior is 19th century English revival architecture with a combination of two story turrets faced with Indiana limestone, Welsh slate and leaded glass windows. The interior is 18th century in style and includes fifty-five livable rooms in 46,054 square feet, including the entertainment wing consisting of a theater, bowling alley and billiard room."
The Park Ranger kindly took my picture. Not even the hiking about the terraced grounds in high-healed boots melted the artistry of Lisanne (colorist) and Shannon (stylist) from the Eber Salon.
If you have a moment, Naomi Caryl posted lovely shots of the Mansion and grounds when her father "Daddy Joe" Hirshhorn considered the grounds to house his massive art collection. The three part series links up starting here.
So close to the 4th of July, I feel it is important to quote what Naomi reports of her father's decision to be the founding patron of the Hirshhorn Museum.
"He felt the collection should all stay together and that it belonged in The United States because it was the only country in the world where he could have achieved what he did----having come to this country as a 'poor little immigrant boy', who had truly lived out "The American Dream".....These important men of Beverly Hills were attempting to get him to bring his entire collection to Beverly Hills and they felt they had the perfect spot all picked out where all of the sculpture and the paintings could be housed."
Alas, her father put the collection on the East Coast. When he passed away, he bequeathed the nation with another 6,000 pieces of art.
Maybe someday, someone will have a collection to fit in the dowager estate. As beautiful as the Beverly Hills park is- without art it is like a stone waiting the perfect setting to show off its sublime beauty to best effect.
As my heart is in the garden, let me share a few shots from my afternoon there.
While there are significant formal areas, much of the park is given to informality. Doesn't this balance match real life?
The trinity of easy success on baked hillsides are rosemary, bougainvillea and lavender.
Look closely at the risers. When rain rushed down the hillside- imagine how it will magnify the little bits of blue glass on the risers.
The sprays of red yucca add visual punch to the all-over greenness.
The Pampas and other grasses along the drainage create a sense of place no where near the city.
Turtles and koi swim about this pond. Wherever people lean over to look at them, the creatures swim over to look up. Probably looking for a bit of food. The white structures on the hillside mark the walk.
Close up, you can see the succulents taking root on the curved rooftops.
However, it is this secret little spot where a little overhead was built for water run off to trickle over that just may be my favorite spot. We have something similar on our back hill where we exposed part of the drainage system to allow the wildlife a bit of water before sending it back underground.
There was just enough daylight to make a run to see Michael Hiezer's Levitated Mass before its official unveiling at LACMA. According to press releases the rock displayed in a 456" long cradle "Taken whole, Levitated Mass speaks to the expanse of art history, from ancient traditions of creating artworks from megalithic stone, to modern forms of abstract geometries and cutting-edge feats of engineering."
Now, the engineering and coordination of government entities involved in getting the boulder from Riverside County to LA is impressive. Yet, I thought maybe there was something special to the graining or more interactive than being able to walk under a very heavy object in earthquake country. When I see it now, I keep hearing Peggy Lee singing the title line to the 1960's classic, "Is that all there is?"
The best thing about the exhibit is that since I live along the route that was endangered by its travel through suburbia- since I went before July 1st- my disappointment was free.