Posted: Friday, July 1, 2011
«One hundred and ten years ago this weekend, on July 2, 1901, American locomotive magnate and Metropolitan Museum of Art benefactor Jacob S. Rogers died. Unbeknownst to the Museum's staff and Trustees at the time, Rogers's death would result in the largest and most significant financial contribution to the institution until that time, and among the most important in its history.
Posted: Thursday, June 30, 2011
Posted: Thursday, June 16, 2011
Posted: Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Posted: Wednesday, June 1, 2011
The "Mask of Agamemnon" is one of the most famous gold artifacts from the Greek Bronze Age. Found at Mycenae in 1876 by the distinguished archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann, it was one of several gold funeral masks found laid over the faces of the dead buried in the shaft graves of a royal cemetery. The most detailed and stylistically distinct mask came to be known as the Mask of Agamemnon, named after the famous king of ancient Mycenae whose triumphs and tribulations are celebrated in Homer's epic poems and in the tragic plays of Euripides. The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s replica of this mask molded by Emile Gilliéron père (manufactured and sold by the Würtemberg Electroplate Company) is an example of an electroformed reproduction, also commonly known as an electrotype—or by the historic term, "galvanoplastic"—reproduction.
Posted: Tuesday, May 31, 2011
One hundred and twenty years ago today, on May 31, 1891, The Metropolitan Museum of Art opened to the public on a Sunday for the first time in its history.
Posted: Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Many of the works on paper currently on view in Historic Images of the Greek Bronze Age: The Reproductions of E. Gilliéron & Son required conservation treatment to address a variety of structural and aesthetic problems. The dedicated effort over the past two years to address the conservation of these objects and to look more closely at their method of production reflects a reconsideration of their role in the Museum and in the history of art itself.
Posted: Tuesday, May 17, 2011
In the second half of the nineteenth century, archaeologists began to focus on understanding prehistoric Greece and its extraordinary flowering during the Greek Bronze Age (about 3000–1050 B.C.). Heinrich Schliemann's discovery of wealthy tombs at Mycenae in 1876 brought to life the Heroic Age immortalized in the epic poetry of Homer, in which King Agamemnon’s palace was described as "rich in gold." Twenty-four years after Schliemann's find, the British archaeologist Sir Arthur Evans began excavations at Knossos, on the island of Crete, that would yield a vast complex of buildings belonging to a sophisticated prehistoric culture, which he dubbed Minoan after the legendary King Minos. Evans hired a Swiss artist, Emile Gilliéron (1850–1924) and later his son, Emile (1885–1939), as chief fresco restorers at Knossos, where they worked for more than thirty years. The Gilliérons also established a thriving business catering to the popular demand for reproductions of antiquities from the newly identified Minoan and Mycenaean civilizations. The current exhibition Historic Images of the Greek Bronze Age: The Reproductions of E. Gilliéron & Son focuses on the colorful and carefully crafted reproductions made by the Gilliérons, which were disseminated around the world and provided a vivid impression of the new finds that inspired a generation of writers, intellectuals and artists, from James Joyce and Sigmund Freud to Pablo Picasso. While there have been previous exhibitions in Europe devoted to the Gilliérons' work, this is the first such presentation in North America.
Posted: Friday, May 13, 2011
Posted: Friday, May 6, 2011