The highest aspirations of architecture can't make up for the lack of internal, bureaucratic mismanagement at the Pompidou Center in Paris. On a recent Thursday night visit to the institution to see the Alexander Calder show, the split-level exhibition venues and unsynchronized gallery hours made it impossible to view the show in it's entirety. I know it's not the first time that an institution's lack of organization had a negative impact upon the viewing public, but when such an institution can't effectively accomplish one of it's primary objectives (presenting cohesive, culturally-relevant programming, exhibitions, etc), it's quite discouraging.
What I was able to see of the show, however, was absolutely beautiful. Calder's suspended, three-dimensional, wire portraits were elegant, original and completely hypnotic. And I spent quite a few of my weakly-converted Euros in the Pompidou's excellent bookstore.