Most buildings in Washington DC take tourists in through some obscure side door, but the National Gallery of Art lets you walk right up these impressive stairs
and into this gorgeous rotunda. From there you can wander through the galleries, or follow the chronological progression of art history.
Several times during our visit I heard the words of my Art History professor echoing in my brain, and I was surprised at how much I remembered.
Fra Filippo Lippi "Madonna and Child"
Leonardo da Vinci "Ginevra de' Benci"
Botticelli "Virgin Adoring the Child"
Thomas Gainsborough "Master John Heathcote"
Turner "Venice: The Dogana and San Giorgio Maggiore"
Monet "Woman With a Parasol"
Renoir "Girl With Watering Can"
Van Gogh "Still Life, Vase With Roses"
Now, this painting is fascinating to me. Van Gogh used a red lake pigment that has faded terribly. Recent digital analysis has revealed that these were originally pink and red roses on a burgundy cloth with a pink background. You can read about it here:
Toulouse-Lautrec "Marcelle Lender Dancing the Bolero"
Picasso "Peter Manach"
Wayne Thibaud "Cakes"
Out of all the things we've seen in Washington, the National Gallery of Art has been my favorite. The fact that we went back for a second visit should tell you how wonderful it was.