Sunday, November 30, 2014

21c Art Museum & Hotel is a short walk from Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art + Breakfast at the Hive Restaurant

As you walk into 21c, behind the front desk
are three Kehinde Wiley oil paintings. 
Kehinde Wiley's
"The Prophet and the King II (Columbus)"

A Night in the Museum
The 21c Museum Hotel
where you sleep
with the art!
21c founders: Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson
Museum Director: Alice Gray

Hidden in the small northwest Arkansas town of Bentonville is Walmart's World Headquarters, a hub of international commerce. Also in Bentonville are the new cultural destinations of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and the 21c Museum Hotel and both of these cultural venues have excellent restaurants. 

At the 21c Museum Hotel, Bentonville, you are greeted at every turn by their iconic "Green Penguins" sculptures. 21c is a 104-room boutique hotel with a contemporary art museum for its lobby and art installations on every floor. The museum/hotel is located on the northeast corner of the Bentonville, Arkansas's historic town square. 21c, museum and hotel continue the cultural experience most visitors begin at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art which is a short walk away along a scenic nature trail.

The front desk and lobby area of 21c Museum Hotel, Bentonville.

The Crystal Bridges Museum has a nature trail that links the large museum with this boutique hotel, restaurant and 24/7 museum.

21c Museum Hotel's logo.
Rachel Lee Hovnanian's
"Dinner for Two"
(Our digital and networked life gives us the impulse to text instead of talk. We are lonely, but fearful of intimacy.)
Rachel Lee Hovnanian"Dinner for Two"
in front of male, a
projected mouse
is eating the cake.
The information sign for
the current 
six month Museum Gallery Exhibition at 21c Museum Hotel.

Yinka Shonibare's "Food Faerie" sculpture is featured in the 21c lobby.
A Yinka Shonibare sculpture

Dis-semblanceProjecting and Perceiving Identity is currently on view in 21c’s galleries and public spaces. The exhibition explores the shifting nature of identity in our digital, global age where we are increasingly more interconnected and interdependent. “We become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us,” said '60s “the medium is the message” theorist Marshall McCluhan. For the next six months, the "Di-semblance" exhibition will be an intriguing, imaginative and thought-provoking welcome to all those who visit the 21c Museum Hotel, Bentonville

A large Kehinde Wiley oil on canvas, behind the front desk.

Kehinde Wiley
"Support the Rural Population
and serve 500 Million Peasants"
2007, oil on canvas

An edition of 199 "Green Penguins" greet 21c guests. Created by the Italian art studio, Cracking Art Group.

Hank Willis Thomas "Baron of the Crossroads" side view

Hank Willis Thomas "Baron of the Crossroads"
front (blurred) view

Adriaan van der Ploeg (Dutch) "Head Shots (European)", 2007

Adriaan van der Ploeg (Dutch)
"Head Shots (Chinese)", 2008

Anthony Goicolea, photograph.

Anthony Goicolea, "Warriors",  photograph.

Bradley McCallum and Jacqueline Tarry,"Cora McHaney (Arrest #7088)"
oil on canvas under toner on silk 

Bradley McCallum and Jacqueline Tarry,"Arrest #" series
oil on canvas under toner on silk

Christoph Draeger (Swiss) "Schizo (Redux)" single channel video
video displayed in a separate projection gallery

Large editioned plastic art sculptures available in the gift shop.
21c's sculpture on the patio.

Drew Tal, "Porcelain Promises", Chromagenic print

Drew Tal, "Porcelain Promises", Chromagenic print

Eva and Franco Mattes, digital prints on canvas

Mohau Modisakeng." Dikubu Series"Chromagenic prints on watercolor paper

Serkan Ozkaya, "Sudden Gust of Wind, Bentonville"

Valerie Belin,
"Painted Daisy
(Carmine Blush Chrysanths)"
2010, Photograph

Taking the
Southern Breakfast
to the highest
possible level!

Under the direction of executive chef and Arkansas native Matthew McClure, "The Hive Restaurant" pays tribute to "High Southern Cuisine" while giving a nod to the classic fresh and local cuisine Southern farm families have enjoyed over the past century.

"The Hive" is a work of art surrounded by contemporary works of art. Our personal experience for breakfast was remarkable, from the friendly and interesting waitstaff, through all of the food courses we sampled.

Service station at Hive.

When judging any food for quality there are many different criteria, but the highest possible compliment may be: "The food tastes as wonderful and real as my grandmother's country kitchen. It was made from only the freshest ingredients and created with great attention and care." That is what my table-mate said of our breakfast sampler.

We tasted: 
The House-Cured thick Bacon
The House-Made Pork Sausage
The Steel Cut Oatmeal
The Fresh Poached Eggs
The Steel Cut Grits  
The Steel Cut Grits with Bacon
The House-Made Country Biscuits
The House-Made Molasses infused Butter
The French Roast Coffee 

We told the restaurant we were there to report on the Hotel only after we had ordered and eaten. We did feel the need to slice our golf ball sized round pork sausage ball into thinner, more edible portions, but there wasn't a weak link in our fresh and delicious breakfast.

As you dine in the restaurant or have drinks in the cocktail lounge21c's Museum exhibits their art, setting a sophisticated mood on all of the walls. The museum is currently featuring contemporary photographs by international artists throughout the dining and lounge areas.

We did not taste any items on the dinner or lunch menus, but in many ways a hotel restaurant is best judged by their breakfast. The breakfast at Hive is worth a visit to enjoy, even if you don't have the opportunity to stay at the 21c museum and hotel. 

The Hive's glasswear becomes an art installation.

The "open kitchen" at The Hive.

A changing art exhibition surrounds the dining area.
Detail of photo, above left.

Detail of photo, above center.
Detail of photo, above right.
"The Hive" cocktail lounge.
(Source: A visit to the hotel & restaurant  All photos were taken by ARTSnFOOD staff, with the permission of 21c Museum Hotel, Bentonville and The Hive Restaurant.)

Editor's Note: To see some of the current special exhibition at Crystal Bridges Museum of Contemporary Art - "State of the Art" - go to this link:

"State of the Art" exhibition at CB ends January 19, 2015.

Until later,

ARTSnFOOD, is an online publication dedicated to "The Pursuit of Happiness through the Arts and Food." ™ All rights reserved for all content. Concept, Original Art, Original Text & "Original or Assigned Photography" are © Copyright 2014 Jack A. Atkinson under all International intellectual property and copyright laws. All photographs were taken and/or used with permission. Artworks © individual artists, fabricators, respective owners or assignees.

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