Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Monday at Crystal Bridges

The only thing on our agenda for this Monday was to spend as much time exploring the museum and grounds as possible.

There are several approaches to the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, AR.  There are two from the north which are the longest trails and have a variety of sculptures and views not seen elsewhere.

We chose the Crystal Bridges Trail which is part of the Bentonville Trail System.  It features a beautiful walk through Compton Gardens, a mountain bike trail and an overlook area.

The Art Trail is also part of this trail and connects the downtown to the museum's south entrance.  It features various art sculptures, native plants and waterways.  I showed some of this in a previous post.  (Link is below)

South Entrance

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art was the vision of the Walton's daughter, Alice.  Both she and her mother had a great appreciation for art but had to travel elsewhere to enjoy this passion.  As an adult, Alice was determined to provide amazing opportunities otherwise unavailable to the people in her hometown.

This whole complex is a masterpiece containing many true masterpieces by master artists.

There is no charge to see the displays in the museum; however, we did buy tickets to see the "Crystals in Art" exhibit.  It is a temporary exhibition going from Oct. 12 of this year through Jan 6, 2020.

Arkansas mountains and caverns are known for their high-quality quartz crystals and some of the largest and purest found to date are in this exhibit.

This piece is known as "The Holy Grail" and is the largest quartz cluster ever found in Arkansas.  It weighs approximately 1,500 pounds and was discovered just south of Crystal Bridges near the town of Hot Springs.

There were examples of ancient artifacts such as engraved gems, figurines, and more dating back as early as 1600 BC.  There were over 75 works from Ancient Egypt, Rome, China and beyond.


This string of beads and Scarab are the oldest items in the exhibit, dating back to 2030-1640 BC.  They were discovered in an Egyptian tomb in late 1889 and are on loan from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. 

 This large piece of glass, mirrors and crystals was so fascinating.  The depths were captivating and endless.

This enormous chandelier is one of the most current items in the exhibit. It was created in 2005.

This is the largest piece of art in the museum spanning two levels.

The museum's restaurant, Eleven, connects the different sections of the building.

Our favorite section was the Early American Art.

I loved this piece because I could imagine this being my mother as she endured years of piano playing in our house.

Other sections are the Contemporary and Modern Art hallways.

One of my favorite artists is Georgia O'Keefe and this is one of my favorite pieces of hers.  I was thrilled to stand by the original.

I also love abstract paintings and the colors of this one caught both mine and Dick's eye.

I came upon this delightful little lady who was sketching the over-sized chicken.

She explained that she has been coming to the museum to sketch for several years.  She showed me some of her amazing drawings in this almost full tablet.

Her time was almost up for this afternoon so she folded up her chair and took her yet to be completed chicken home to be worked on another day.

The Hall of Mirrors was a fun and colorful excursion.

Outside the Museum Store is this large creature.

We took the elevator to the tower and got this lovely overview of the northern part of the building.

Following almost a complete day inside the museum, we went back outside to tour the Frank Lloyd Wright House.

This house designed by the famed architect and now known as the Bachman-Wilson House, was moved to this site at Crystal Bridges in 2013 from New Jersey.

Behind the house is the Tulip Tree Trail which features the largest trees on the Crystal Springs grounds.  It also includes this natural spring that flows from the ground at a cool 50 degrees and feeds into the museum's ponds.

You can almost feel the tranquility and hear the rushing water in this photo, can't you.

While I was exploring, Dick found someone to visit with.

He never meets a stranger but some are just stranger than others.

This concluded our day at Crystal Bridges and what a wonderful day it was.

The next morning we got an early breakfast and began the trip southward toward home.

No matter where you go and how much fun you have while there, there is no place like home.

I hope you have enjoyed taking our Bentonville, Arkansas trip with us and if you ever get the chance to go for yourself, don't miss it.  You can always click on the links below to enjoy the whole trip.

Elizabeth "Libby" Day
Elizabeth "Libby" Day

Hello, My name is Libby. I enjoy reading good books, painting, blogging, spending time with friends and whatever my "Heart" leads me to do. Welcome to Beauty Without Within.


  1. What an amazing place to visit. I would love to visit there someday. Don't you just love Frank Lloyd Wright homes. We had some in Riverside, Illinois and a friend of mine in H.S. lived in one. Your photos were a joy to see!


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