Art Also Inspires Travel

The Great Big Travel Literature Giveaway continues today with your guide to a dream vacation. See end of post for title of today’s prize.


Destination: Worldwide

Vehicle: Art

When Ken and I married, fresh out of college, I made art one of my first purchases for our apartment. I bought a Picasso.

Picasso's Thee Musicians
Three Musicians by Picasso from MoMA

The Three Musicians cost me about $4.50 from a print and poster store in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Travel in mid century to New York City always included a visit to the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) where I first saw both Picasso’s Three Musicians and  sat entranced by his Guernica. Many,many years later, we traveled in Spain and saw landscapes familiar to the painter around his native Malaga, and we walked a block from our hotel in Madrid and saw Guernica in its new home, the Museo Reina Sofia.

When I read a release from about the top ten popular fine art reproductions ordered from their store in the last decade– it occurred to me that art also inspires travel, and deserves a place in A Traveler’s Library.

  • Art lovers may travel in search of a scene or scenes that a particular painter focused on. (I have always wanted to see that hillside portrayed in El Greco’s View of Toledo)
  • Great museums certainly draw visitors. (I still need to see the Louvre and the Tate).
  • Travelers may want to visit the home country of a favorite artist. (Monet’s Giverney tops my list, but there are many others.)

These three motivations for travel have inspired me to start a feature at A Traveler’s Library about Art and Artists that inspire travel. Let’s hang a few virtual pictures in the virtual library. Does that sound to you like an interesting addition to A Traveler’s Library?

Meanwhile, while you contemplate that question…here are the most popular paintings from Overstock Art, which raises another question.  Do you agree with the choices they list? Keep in mind that these are the most popular reproductions ordered from their business, and people who hang reproductions are representing a slightly different universe than people who visit museums to see the originals, not to mention the people who can afford to BUY the originals. I regret to say that while I am addicted to museums, I can still only afford to hang reproductions.

Starry Night
Starry Night by Vincent Van Gogh

Overstock Art’s most ordered paintings in the last decade:

1.       Starry Night – Vincent van Gogh

2.      Café Terrace at Night – Vincent van Gogh

3.      The Kiss – Gustav Klimt

4.      Poppy Field at Argenteuil – Claude Monet

5.      The Mona Lisa – Da Vinci

6.      Le Rêve (The Dream in French) – Pablo Picasso

7.      Luncheon of the Boating Party – Pierre August Renoir

8.      The Scream – Edvard Munch

9.      Red Cannas – Georgia O’Keeffe

10.    Persistence of Memory – Salvador Dali


Coconut on the beach

CONTEST OVER> The Great Big Travel Literature Giveaway prize for today is an autographed guidebook to a dream location, the Moon Handbook: Fiji. Author David Stanley knows every corner and every custom of the Pacific paradise, a collection of more than 100 habitable islands. David autographed this copy to me, when I reviewed it for Indie Travel PodCast Magazine,  but I imagine somebody out there has more need of it than me. The deadline is Midnight Tonight, Tuesday 1-19. Check the rules here.

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About Vera Marie Badertscher

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler's Library, or recreating her family's past at Ancestors In Aprons . She has written for Reel Life With Jane, Life is a Trip and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.

3 thoughts on “Art Also Inspires Travel

  1. Interesting. I once had a roommate who had starry night, so that confirms the popularity. I would prefer either a picasso or a renior or a mastisse. Not so much the others. I don’t think there are too many of us who can afford the originals.

  2. I agree that art inspires travel. Art exhibits are one of the main reasons my husband travels. I was really intrigued to see The Scream had placed in your top ten. We visited the Munch exhibit in Oslo, or should I say the Munch Museum? Afterwards, I was a bit on overload, but was especially glad to discover his more obscure work.
    .-= Alexandra´s last blog ..What Happened After I Cast My Vote …. =-.

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