Monday, July 25, 2011

WORLD MUSEUMS: Art Around The Globe

A World of Culture Awaits You

Centuries ago, the Greeks inaugurated the word museum: an institution devoted to the procurement, care, study, and display of objects of lasting interest or value. Today, museums exist in almost every corner of the world. Some concentrate on a particular place in time or culture, while others showcase works of all ages, periods, and styles. Museums pay tribute to the talent, the history, and the enchantment of art.  Museums are a time machine back to the past where works that shaped our entire world were created.  They illustrate times where cultures clashed, yet through museum art, we have been able to embrace humanity and its creative wonders. Museums provide a window to the world’s greatest artists, from modern to classical.  An observer can see through that window and interpret what the artist was feeling and expressing. Connecting us with past masters that have shaped the future, museums allow us to experience those cultures. Thus, as we expand our horizons through travel, take time to experience art through the world’s top museums that have kept cultural histories alive. Begin your adventure...

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the MET, is America’s premier center for art collection. It includes more than two million works of art spanning five thousand years of world culture. It has artifacts from every part of the globe from prehistory to the present. Situated in New York City’s Central Park, the MET draws nearly five million people per year. Built in 1874, it houses many categories of art based on its broad range of impressionism. The institution specializes in everything from Classical Antiquity, Ancient Egypt, European Master Architects, to more modern instruments of art.  These include musical devices, costumes, weapons, armor, an Islamic art section with Mosques, textiles, ceramics and a rooftop garden. Globally, this pipeline of culture is ranked third in the world.  Its reputation of prestige and extensive specialized knowledge is highlighted through its special staff of curators in each department.

The Guggenheim, New York
Globally renowned for its ground-breaking architecture, the Guggenheim is a timeless landmark, creating the perfect environment for contemporary and modern art exhibitions. The Guggenheim’s permanent collection has a distinctive individuality that separates it from other modern museums around the globe. The collection features works by some of the most popular artists of the 20th century such as Eduardo Chilida, Yves Klein, Robert Motherwell, and Andy Warhol. Always staying true to its mission to collect, conserve and study, the Guggenheim illustrates art of the new millennium from an assortment of perspectives, reaching a broad and diverse audience.

The Modern Museum of Art (MoMA), New York
The Museum of Modern Art serves as a gateway from the classical and never forgotten past to the modern and innovative art of now. The MoMA’s primary concept is to facilitate the shift from precedent artworks and attempting to understand and therefore take pleasure in the art of our time. Hosting astonishing exhibitions such as “Picasso: Guitars 1912-1914” and “Shaping Modernity: Design 1880-1980” the MoMA successfully magnetizes a vast audience that expands from scholars to young children. All in all, the Museum of Modern Art is a conversation between the past and the present, a continuously moving illustration of the evolution of art.

The Smithsonian, Washington D.C. 
The Smithsonian is known as the world’s largest museum and research complex.  It consists of nineteen museums and galleries, the National Zoological Park and nine research facilities. Through incredibly diverse and distinguishing artworks, the Smithsonian upholds its four grand challenges: unlocking the mysteries of the universe; understanding and sustaining a biodiverse planet; valuing world cultures; understanding the American experience. The Smithsonian is home to over 137 million astonishing and culturally essential artifacts.  Visitors experience western air and space memorabilia, such as Amelia Earhart’s Lockheed Model 5B Vega plane, to eastern sculptures, such as the Bodhisvatta, that has been conserved for centuries.  The Smithsonian sustains art as distinct and variable as the visitors themselves.

Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris
The Centre Georges Pompidou is the largest museum for modern art in Europe.  It is situated in the Beaubourg area of Paris and is architecturally as unique as the artwork within.  Its revolutionary design is attributable to visible color-coordinated functional and structural elements of the building. The Centre Georges Pompidou is entirely focused on modern and contemporary art.  It is a place where visual arts meet and integrate with theatre, music, cinema, literature and the spoken word.  The Centre Pompidou holds a vast library, cinema, performance hall, music research institute, bookshops, restaurant and a café. Completely committed to its mission of spreading knowledge about creative works from the 20th century, the museum hosts over thirty public exhibitions hosting millions of visitors each year.

The Tate Museum, London
The Tate is an institution that maintains the United Kingdom’s national collection of British Art, as well as International Modern and Contemporary Art. Its network of four art museums: Tate Britain, Tate Liverpool, Tate St. Ives and Tate Modern, exemplify the separation of church and state by its disjointing what is British versus what is modern art. This is one of the reasons why it specializes more in Victorian era art than any other art facility. While this regional art centre is public funded, its collections stem from private collectors and donations that started from the early 1500’s. One of the Tate’s most publicized art events is the awarding of the annual Turner Prize, which takes place at Tate Britain. The Turner Prize is presented annually to a British visual artist under the age of 50. Awarding the prize is organized by the Tate gallery and staged at Tate Britain. Since its beginnings in 1984 it has become the United Kingdom’s most publicized art award.

The Vatican, Rome
A timeline of art through the ages, the Vatican Museums are among the world’s greatest museums displaying masterpieces collected by the Roman Catholic Church throughout the centuries. Located en La Citta Eterna (The Eternal City) Rome, the Vatican Museums are inside Vatican City.  They maintain the magic and luster of the Renaissance, carrying the worlds most renowned classical sculptures and timeless masterpieces.  Over four million visitors walk through the splendid museums each year. The Vatican Museums have been enlightening people of all cultures for over five hundred years, making it one of the oldest, most breathtaking pieces of history and fascination. Among the masterpieces presented are Raphael’s The School of Athens, worshipped by art aficionados as a timeless eternal work, Leonardo Da Vinci’s St. Jerome in the Wilderness,and Caravaggio’s Entombment. The Vatican Museums are the birthplace of the Sistine Chapel, the best-known chapel in the Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the pope. One look above and the viewer will be taken by the chapel ceiling painted by Michelangelo and his celebrated painting The Creation of Adam. Famous for its astonishing frescoes created during the Renaissance by artists including Michelangelo, Sandro Botticelli, Pietro Perugina and others, the Sistine Chapel and Vatican Museums are an enlightening memory of what was once the Golden age of the Arts.

Galleria Degli Uffizi, Florence
Dating back to the 14th century, this museum is easily one of the eldest and most recognized of the entire western world. Located in the heart of Florence, the Uffizi impeccably flaunts Italy’s superbly rich culture and history through the works of Leonardo Da Vinci, Sandro Botticelli, Michelangelo, and Raphael. The Uffizi is a time capsule to the height of Italian art, being home to one of the most famous works of art, The Birth of Venus. Just as captivating as the artwork, is the architectural masterpiece of the Uffizi itself. Built by the master of Vasari in the shape of a horseshoe, the Ufizzi is predominantly a large hall with a Doric screen at its end.  This opens a view to the Arno River, creating space which seemingly continues past the corridor’s walls. As art abounds from the frescoed ceilings to the intricate columns of the courtyard, each wall holds the world’s most valuable pieces of Florentine art. The Uffizzi not only contains art, but is a masterpiece all on its own.

The Louvre, Paris
Upheld as the “museum among museums,” the Louvre is the majestic capital of the world’s finest artworks. Since its founding in the 18th century, it has remained recognized as a world-renowned center for the celebration and history of art. Containing more than 380,000 objects and displaying 35,000 works of art in eight departments, it stretches over 60,000 square feet of pure artful magic. The Louvre’s noteworthy collection crosses thousands of years and continents, reaching from India to China, Americas to Europe. Acknowledged for works as the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo and the Victory of Samothrace, the Louvre takes place as the most visited museum in the world. Described as a museum of all, the Louvre takes pride in a constant willpower to reach the most extensive French and international audience possible. Through an incredible amount of artistic works and masterpieces, the Louvre captures the journey of art and the heart of  cultures that created and defended it.

British Museum, London
The British Museum is one of the most complete timelines of all of human history and culture. Everything about the British museum, from its architectural design to its monuments, is dedicated to telling the story of ancient history through the living cultures of the modern day.  The museum’s collection contains more than seven million paintings and sculptures.  It is the second most globally visited museum by tourist and locals alike. The museum itself is divided into three primary houses but categorizes collections based on continents, artistic themes and types of art (antiquities, archives and libraries). Its classical Greek Neo-Classical department earned its superb reputation by categorizing seventy million trinkets, while maintaining 150 million books and manuscripts of ideas and design to the Natural Museum.  This museum alone also has fourteen million items of Egyptian history outside of Cairo, including Rosetta Stone, erected mummies and coffins from Africa’s cult of the dead.

The Israel Museum, Jerusalem
Located in Jerusalem, the heard of Jewish culture, the Israel Museum was founded in 1965.  It houses encyclopedic collections consisting of works dating from prehistoric times to the present day. It is known for featuring the most comprehensive and extensive collection of biblical archaeology. The Israel Museum is ranked among the top museums of the world. One of the many highlights is the Shrine of the Book, which encloses the Dead Sea Scrolls.  The Scrolls are the oldest biblical manuscripts to date. The Israel Museum’s vast collections of religious works encompass extremely rare medieval biblical manuscripts. The Museum expands from illustrative arts to a leading archeology museum featuring the Model of Jerusalem in the Second Temple Period.  This Model recreates the topography and architectural elements of the city prior to its demolition by the Romans in 66 CE. The Museum’s collection of artwork includes works of sculptures by modern masters Jacques Lipchitz, Henry Moore, Claes Oldenburg, Pablo Picasso, in the distinguished Billy Rose Art Garden. One is sure to delight in both art and a rich culture at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem.

Miami Spice

Celebrating 10 years of unique and world-class fine dining!

Miami Spice 2011 is a mouth-watering summer restaurant promotion showcasing the very best of Miami cuisine. During August and September, Miami’s top restaurants offer three-course meals (Lunch $22, Dinner $35) featuring signature dishes created by world-renowned chefs. Discover the tropical fusion of ingredients that makes Miami dining so wonderfully out of the ordinary. An epicure’s paradise awaits you in Greater Miami and the Beaches!

The Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Miami Beach Convention Center and Centerplate Catering invite you to enjoy the 2nd Annual Taste of Miami Spice Kickoff Event & Fundraiser, featuring tastings from a selection of participating Miami Spice restaurants and celebrity chefs selling and signing cookbooks. This kickoff event will take place at the Miami Beach Convention Center on Thursday, July 28th, 2011.


With all the arousing nightlife, and adult events in South Florida, it is difficult to find an event that combines family fun, live music, and great food. Fortunately, the Biscayne Triangle Truck Roundup, or BTTR, is back and better than ever.

The BTTR is a weekly culinary dream where over 25 food trucks come together and whip out their finest mouth-watering creations for all to enjoy. Located across the Johnson & Wales campus on NE 127th Street and Biscayne Blvd., with plenty of free parking, the BTTR event has gained popularity and a fantastic reputation as a family fun gathering for all, and a religious weekly event for some.  Mark Tuesdays on your calendar, and head out to BTTR from 5:30PM to 10PM to give your taste buds the treatment they deserve.  Say goodbye to the days where food trucks only stood outside of warehouses or construction sites, and say hello to a new era of Food Trucks where they are revving up their engines to serve authentic and delicious dishes on the go.

At BTTR, everyone is welcomed, and by everyone, we actually mean it. Bring the entire family, and that includes furry family members as well.  BTTR offers an open atmosphere to enjoy lovely weather, great music, and even better food. On a location with a huge lawn, guests are known to roll out blankets, bring out lawn chairs, and even a football for the kids to play. All in all, the BTTR event is a wonderful gathering for all to enjoy. Live music is usually provided which only boosts the amazing atmosphere. Just imagine sitting on a lawn chair, listening to jazz, watching your children play, chatting with friends, all the while indulging in a scrumptious pulled pork or a gourmet cheese sandwich. BTTR has something for everyone, and the varieties of foods are just as diverse as the guests themselves.

Based on the idea of local, seasonal and fresh, the Slow Food Truck provides fulfilling and delicious dishes, cooked with love and care.  The Slow Food Truck’s mouth-watering menu will have even the most decisive customer pondering on what to order as every single dish sounds just as delicious as the next. From short ribs, pulled pork, freshly ground burgers, and just about anything that can be put on a grill, the Slow Food Truck provides an array of enticing dishes.

Staying true to its local, seasonal, and fresh concept, there are no freezers on the truck and none of the ingredients are processed: a great, and hard to find quality in today’s food industry.

The masterminds behind the truck, Oren Bass and Zachary Schwartz, are graduates of Johnson & Wales culinary school, who came together with the idea to work independently and make delicious food accessible to even the most on-the-go customer. Redefining the food truck industry, the Slow Food Truck provides hearty and wholesome meals in a Slow Food inspired, yet quick manner.

With unique recipes such as the Short Rib Sandwich, the truck’s signature dish, made with Coca-Cola and five Chinese spices, it is no wonder that the Slow Food Truck has gained its remarkable reputation and popularity in just six months. So much so, that they are now opening a Slow Food Truck Café in North Miami Beach which will be open Monday through Friday 7AM-2:30PM. But, for the fast-paced customer, their food truck locations are not definite and are posted daily on Twitter and Facebook. 

Jefe’s Original, easily known for providing “the best fish tacos in town,” is a food truck on a mission to bring Ensenada style fish tacos to South Florida. From West to East Coast, Jefe’s Original has successfully brought the flavors of Mexico by way of California to Miami and provided its customers with authentic taste traditionally only found thousands of miles away.

Jefe’s Original’s owner, Jack Garabedian, has not only made it a priority to serve genuine, top quality foods, but to make these foods easily accessible to the public by creating and organizing the BTTR event.

All tacos are inspired by the Ensenada style, and Jefe’s embraces the style to the fullest, as the fish used comes straight from the Pacific coast of Cota Rica, the same waters used in the Ensenada tacos. One bite out of Jefe’s Original Ensenada Style Fish Taco and one will be transported back to Jefe’s mother’s beach side shack. While the recipe remains a secret, the Ensenada Style Fish Tacos on the menu are made with soft fresh corn tortillas, stacked with Jefe’s Original beer batter crispy fish, shaved fresh green cabbage, authentic Pico de Gallo and cooling house made crema, served with a fresh lime squeeze, and if that doesn’t get your mouth watering, I don’t know what does! Yet, the goodness at Jefe’s Original’s continues: not only does Jefe’s make a huge effort to maintain true to form with authentic Ensenada taste, but they put in a huge effort to provide the highest quality ingredients to its customers by making their own sauces, hand cutting each French fry, and hand picking each vegetable. The Jefe’s Original menu continues past Ensenada Style Fish Tacos, providing Tacos Carnitas, Taquitos, Real Deal Fries, and All-American Burgers.

Like most trucks, Jefe’s Original is constantly on the go, rolling six days a week with approximately ten shifts per week and off on Mondays. There are no set locations, so following Jefe’s on Facebook or Twitter is the best way to know their whereabouts. Yet, on Saturday and Sundays the truck can be found at Haulover, a breakthrough in the Food Truck industry as it is the first time a food truck services in a park. 

Sugar Yummy Mama is the epitome of gourmet confections on the go. With handcrafted cupcakes, cake pops, cake balls, and classical creations such as Cake Push Pops, it is no wonder Sugar Yummy Mama has built a reputation as a high quality, sweet indulgence on wheels. It is almost impossible to resist temptation when passing this truck and seeing all the different, perfectly created, cupcakes on display. Almost as sweet as the delicacies themselves, the creator behind Sugar Yummy Mama, Giselle Pinto, is very artistic with her designs and passionate about her craft.  After traveling the country, Pinto went through a life changing experience that allowed her to realize her true calling, moving to Miami, and in a matter of three weeks putting together Sugar Yummy Mama with one single purpose: to make people happy.  Sugar Yummy Mama provides a wide range of flavors: for the chocolate lover there is Brrrownie Yuminess, described by Pinto as “the kind of chocolate you can’t stop eating,” and for the more exotic taste buds, there is Yummy Wuava, a true taste of the “Caribe” using a Miami traditional flavor of Guava, inspired by its people. Although gourmet, the prices are low. A delicious cake ball will be only $1.75 and a cake pop only $2. The most unique creations have to be the Cake Push Pops: a push pop filled with banana pudding or wafers and cream; Sticky Lips Bars: a mouth-watering crack pie made with oatmeal and caramel; and the Pinky Bacon: a chocolate cupcake with butter cream topping, maple syrup, and topped with bacon pieces. While there are no official locations or hours since the truck is constantly moving, the daily locations are posted on Facebook and Twitter. So, if you hear your sweet tooth calling, simply log on to Facebook or Twitter, scope out the truck’s locations, and give in to temptation.  The delicacies are so delicious they are sure to overcome the guilt!

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