Any exhibit that celebrates the everyday beguiles. Not that the act of making and drinking a cup of tea is really everyday, except that millions around the world make it an every day act. But the origins and story of tea, of tea production, of mores and traditions and rituals, are of course complex.
Not that we're thinking complex as we dunk that bag of green tea mint, while yawning and staring at the wall. Dunk. Stare. Glance at cup. Is water tea-y enough? Dunk some more.
If you're a daily dunker, and you couldn't do without your Darjeeling, or Orange Pekoe, or whatever your bag may be, make plans to head to the Fowler Museum at UCLA starting August 16th. "Steeped in History: The Art of Tea," an exhibit focusing on all things leaf, debuts. Look for ceramics, for paintings, photos and furniture, all with an eye on that coveted cup.
While it may not be steamy in the usual sense, you can bet this exhibit will have more steam than most shows this year. And coffee drinkers, don't be jealous; you're invited, too. We won't stoke that fire -- coffee vs. tea -- because so many of us sip both, sometimes within the same hour.
The Fowler, if you've never visited, is a wonderful museum that charges no admission. None. Hope that puts a little pep in your next cup of peppermint.
"Steeped in History: The Art of Tea," presented by The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, runs from Sunday, August 16th through Sunday, November 29th