Today Dianne, Virginia, Barbara, Inge, Ginger and I attended the first Bach cantata of the season at the Blanton Museum of Art, “Zerreißet, zersprenget, zertrümmert die Gruft” (Tear, break, smash the vault).
This cantata had been scheduled last September but the UT campus was locked down that day due to a gunman who was shooting into the air; he eventually shot himself in one of the libraries on campus. We were glad that they rescheduled it for today.
The cantata is based on a libretto by Picander and has a simple plot. Pallas Athene and the muses celebrate a feast in honor of the learned man on Mount Helicon. She fears that Aeolus, god of the winds, will unleash the autumn storms and ruin their celebration. Zephyr, god of mild summer breezes, and Pomona, goddess of fruit-growing, beg Aeolus to defer but it was actually Pallas who persuades Aeolus to promise not to disturb the peace for the time being.
The featured art today was “Flora” by Sebastiano Ricci, c. 1712-1716, oil on canvas. Our favorite docent led the tour. She also discussed several other paintings. After the tour we had lunch at the Blanton Café.
On the way back to the parking garage, I took photos of three of the decorated cow sculptures in front of the Texas State History Museum. There are about100 such sculptures around town. The sculptures turn up in some unexpected places! (http://cowparadeaustin.com/) On October 30, CowParade Austin will host an auction at The Driskill Hotel. About 50 of the cows will be sold to benefit Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas and Superhero Kids Fund. In the U.S., auction prices have averaged nearly $10,000 per cow.