In my wanderings this afternoon, I stopped by our local Italian Cultural Institute, which is hosting a small exhibition of etchings & drawings by Giorgio Morandi. The works come from the Estorick Collection in London. I know that Morandi has a special reputation for the Italians, but he's an artist I have no experience with. The majority of the works come from between the wars & are all either landscapes or still lifes. The drawings appear to be tentative studies & not finished works at all. I thought the landscapes etched with Morandi's very fine cross hatching to be the best works. The contrast between the banality of the subjects & the artist's close observation gives them an enigmatic feeling.
On the other side of the block, I discovered the new location of Cafe Prague in the alley-like Merchant Street. I was very sad when I found the Pacific Street location closed, so it was nice to know that the place is still in business. The new location is airier but not as funky & Bohemian. The friendly hostess gave me a menu to take away & told me that they also have a place on Mission between 17th & 18th Streets.