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Teen Blog

Garry Winogrand's Perfect Mistakes

Danlly, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Friday, August 22, 2014

I consider Garry Winogrand's photographs found in the current exhibition of his work to be a collection of perfect mistakes. "Perfect" because, even though the subject is often not posing or even looking straight at the camera, there is something about the picture that makes it incredibly engaging. The very same picture can simultaneously feel like a "mistake," however, since it may capture people who are either unaware they are being photographed or are unhappy about it. In some cases, it feels to me like Winogrand accidentally pressed the shutter button. Normally people have to pose or look at the camera in order for a photograph to be considered successful, but Winogrand instead intended to capture these unguarded people and moments.

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Teen Blog

Front to Back, Real to Posed: Is Winogrand-Style Street Photography Dead?

Oren, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Garry Winogrand's street photography, currently on view in an eponymous exhibition at the Museum, is often astonishingly candid and real. But would he have been able to use his distinct style today? The Internet has made it easier than ever to share photos and spread them around. But it's also made people far more self-conscious when being photographed and, dare I say, more frightened of the camera.

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Teen Blog

Garry Winogrand: A Perspective on the Past

Joleyne, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Friday, August 15, 2014

Today, with the special features on DSLRs, you can get a good shot even in difficult lighting environments. You can also use Photoshop and special effects to alter photographs after they've been taken. But imagine a time in which photo editing was not as common and photography was not as easy to do as it is today.

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Teen Blog

Take the Pic or It Didn't Happen

Ann, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Friday, August 8, 2014

In the words of Garry Winogrand, subject of the current exhibition bearing his name, "If you didn't take the picture, you weren't there." Today, when most people hear a bizarre story, they want to have some sort of evidence, like a photograph. They want to see whatever happened with their own eyes. Winogrand upends this scenario. Instead, he simply provides the proof, and denies the audience the story behind it.

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Teen Blog

A First Look at Garry Winogrand

Joseph, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Tuesday, August 5, 2014

It's a human tendency to take apart what's put in front of us. But more importantly, we have a selfish desire to connect a piece of artwork to our lives in some way. We may feel almost dead if we are unable to connect the artwork to some greater philosophical idea that we believe to be present. While there is nothing wrong with that process, the artist may not agree with your interpretation, as the work may in fact have no underlying meaning. The artist may have simply created the piece because of its aesthetics.

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Teen Blog

Van Gogh's Cypresses

Luca, Former High School Intern

Posted: Friday, August 1, 2014

Vincent van Gogh painted a series of cypress trees during his stay in an asylum in Saint-Remy, France, but one work in particular—Cypresses—has always stood out to me.

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Teen Blog

Interviewing Sculptures at the Met

Floraine, Former High School Intern

Posted: Friday, July 25, 2014

As I travel through the galleries of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, one question always lingers in my mind: If these inanimate objects were able to speak, what would they say? I have taken on the task of "interviewing" three sculptures to break their silence and give us more insight into their lives and stories.

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Teen Blog

Charles James, Artist and Innovator

Angeles, TAG Member; Jill, TAG Member; and Maleficent Twemlow (a.k.a. Anna), TAG Member

Posted: Monday, July 21, 2014

Charles James grew up traveling with his family to fashion capitals all over the globe. He gained inspiration from the world around him and then put his own personal spin on traditional ideas, never choosing to follow any particular seasonal trends. He loved to take funky fabric and work it into ways never seen before. For example, if a fabric was meant to be used in a stiff manner, James would soften it with steam and bend it to his desired shape. He was uncompromising in his vision, always favoring his personal ideals of feminine beauty over the specific desires of his clients, who, despite this stubbornness, loved him. He was a revolutionary iconoclast who considered himself as much an artist and a technician as a designer.

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Teen Blog

Charles James: Designing for the Female Form

Morgan, High School Intern

Posted: Friday, July 11, 2014

Charles James: Beyond Fashion features the works of revolutionary fashion designer Charles James, known for his avant-garde concepts and architecturally advanced structure and form. Upon coming into the gallery filled with ball gowns, you're greeted by these amazing dresses on circular pedestals. The whole room is so dimly lit that the dresses almost seem to be suspended in mid-air in the semidarkness.

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Teen Blog

Charles James: The Fashion Engineer

Brooke, TAG Member; Natalee, TAG Member; and Tiffany, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, July 4, 2014

As your eyes adjust to the dim light in the exhibition Charles James: Beyond Fashion, text appears on the glass before you and guides how you should consider the dresses behind it—if you can even call them dresses! Charles James revolutionized the twentieth-century fashion establishment through his idiosyncratic transformation of stiff millinery material into soft, fluid lines that mirror his notion of a woman's ideal form. The lines of his dresses emulate the modern art of Georgia O'Keeffe.

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Teen Blog

Fashion Unbound: Charles James at the Met

Hallie, Guest Blogger

Posted: Friday, June 27, 2014

The current exhibition Charles James: Beyond Fashion, the first in the Museum's new Anna Wintour Costume Center, features the work of one of the most significant couturiers of the twentieth century. When you walk into the exhibition, the lighting and placement of Charles James's glamorous ball gowns make you feel as though you're a guest at an enchanting party, and the dresses, which have names such as "Butterfly," "Clover Leaf," "Swan," and "Diamond," are exquisite.

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Teen Blog

Funhouse at the Met

Jimin, Former High School Intern

Posted: Friday, June 20, 2014

One of my favorite amusement park rides as a child was the funhouse. It wasn't just about the big revolving disks and undulating staircases; my obsession with funhouses came from the fact that I could be in control of my own experience, unlike in other rides where I would just have to sit passively.

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Teen Blog

How Well Do You Know the Met?

Emma, Former High School Intern

Posted: Friday, June 13, 2014

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is home to some of the world's most respected art. People from all over the world come to see the collection and appreciate the history and stories that the works present. Think you know the Met's collection like a pro? Here's a game to test your knowledge and see just how much you know about the artists and their subjects.

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Teen Blog

The Met's Amazing Teen Programs

Audrey, Former TAG Member and High School Intern

Posted: Friday, June 6, 2014

It's been almost a year since I was a member of the Met's Teen Advisory Group, and I have come to realize something important: teen programs at the Met are amazing! Who would have thought that such a large museum smack in the middle of New York City would offer absolutely free classes to teens that were taught by some the best teachers and artists around?

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Teen Blog

The World of Drawing at the Met: To Draw or Not to Draw

Audrey, Former TAG Member and High School Intern

Posted: Thursday, May 29, 2014

What do you think about when you come to the Met? There are many things you may think of: art, walking, five thousand years of history. But have you thought about making art yourself?

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Teen Blog

Lilith

Morgan, High School Intern

Posted: Friday, May 23, 2014

I was introduced to Lilith by Kiki Smith on a tour of modern sculpture at the Met. What first struck me about this piece was its location: it's literally hanging upside down in the middle of the wall as you walk up the stairs in the Modern and Contemporary Art galleries from the first floor to the second.

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Teen Blog

Infinite Repetition in Nonrepeating Patterns

Chantal Stein, College Intern

Posted: Monday, May 12, 2014

The Islamic world is famous for its stunning tilework: lavish blue and turquoise ceramic tiles featuring an almost infinite array of geometric patterns. This tilework has adorned the walls of mosques, tombs, and the homes of the wealthy, enhancing the beauty of these spaces, for centuries.

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Teen Blog

Possibly Love

Angeles, TAG Member; and Genevieve, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, May 2, 2014

The Wedding of Stephen Beckingham and Mary Cox by William Hogarth is a very intriguing piece. It depicts an intimate affair in which only family members and people on a "need-to-know" basis are present.

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Teen Blog

Major in Fearlessness

Sumura, TAG Member; and Tiffany, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, April 25, 2014

In European Paintings gallery 643, we were struck by two paintings by Lucas Cranach the Elder that portray fearless heroines furthering the Christian cause. At first, we thought (wrongly) that the two works depict the same girl due to the figures' rich, red-orange dresses and pale faces with curly hair. We also noted the parallel between the guy beheading the girl in one work and the girl beheading the guy in the other. When we learned that the girls are actually different people—Barbara and Judith—we synthesized the two brave heroines into one and created a short story about her.

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Teen Blog

Romantic Nature in the Met

Jill, TAG Member; and Chantal Stein, College Intern

Posted: Thursday, April 17, 2014

Observe this painting and walk through the details of this romantic nature scene. You can almost hear the water flowing through the center of the painting; you feel like you are there in the wooded hills between Holland and Germany. The trees are fully leaved in green and reddish-brown tones, along with some zigzagging bare branches.

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Teen Blog

A Love Letter to The Love Letter

Emily Z., TAG Member; and Shivanna, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, April 11, 2014

Walking through the galleries of eighteenth-century French art, we fell in love with The Love Letter, Jean Honoré Fragonard's feathery depiction of a flirtatious young lady. What first caught our eyes was the golden light that illuminates her pale skin and rosy cheeks. The beautiful light flows through the painting and brings out the yellow, brown, and pink tones of the work. The combination of colors is simply breathtaking.

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Teen Blog

An Intriguingly Hellish Landscape

Natalee, TAG Member; and Maleficent Twemlow (a.k.a. Anna), TAG Member

Posted: Friday, April 4, 2014

​When we recently walked through gallery 642 in European Paintings, this painting in particular caught our eye. We found it so eye-catching because of its distinctive, dark color palette that makes it stand out from the rest of the gallery, and also because of its surreal and macabre subject matter.

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Teen Blog

A True Pioneer

Emily Z., TAG Member

Posted: Friday, March 28, 2014

The sculpture Pioneer Woman in the current exhibition The American West in Bronze, 1850–1925 caught my attention because it depicts a woman. Before you roll your eyes and claim that I am stating the obvious, bear with me! The field of American Western art is dominated by renditions of men and animals, so Bryant Baker's sculpture offers a unique approach to capturing the West. The very fact that Pioneer Woman focuses on a pioneer woman makes it noteworthy, but the meaning of the work is more elusive than just its subject matter.

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Teen Blog

Reflections on the West through Bronze

Karl, TAG Member

Posted: Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Sculptures capture emotions and body movements, which, in my opinion, makes them more relatable than paintings. The sculptures in the exhibition The American West in Bronze, 1850–1925 really evoke the American West, and the details bring the pieces to life. Cast in different sizes and displayed on pedestals of different heights, the pieces create an effect like a mountain range. The ridges and valleys work to draw your attention to each piece, no matter its size, and the lack of conformity allows the viewer to allocate time to each sculpture and absorb its details.

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Teen Blog

The American West: Times Change, Places Change, and We Reflect

Natalee, TAG Member; and Tiffany, TAG Member

Posted: Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The first object seen upon entering the exhibition The American West in Bronze, 1850–1925 is a buffalo, perhaps one of the most important symbols of the American West. This sculpture, Henry Merwin Shrady's Buffalo, stands in front of a blown-up chromolithograph of a herd of wild buffalo, and showcases the exhibition's unique point of view, blending the artists' and patrons' fondest memories and wildest dreams of what the vast, "untouched" frontier meant. Nostalgia and excitement abound in the exhibition, as brave pioneers conquer the West and search for the American Dream.

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Teen Blog

Impressions of Ink Art

Jill, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, February 21, 2014

The exhibition Ink Art: Past as Present in Contemporary China is all about ink. Darks and lights and midtones are used everywhere. There are so many different art styles that you're bound to find something you like. The exhibition features several scrolls, which tell stories through writing or pictures and even through combinations of the two.

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Teen Blog

A Glimpse of China: Duan Jianyu's Beautiful Dream 3

Karl, TAG Member

Posted: Thursday, February 13, 2014

Duan Jianyu's Beautiful Dream series in the exhibition Ink Art: Past as Present in Contemporary China is surprisingly beautiful given the fact that it was painted on old corrugated cardboard boxes.

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Teen Blog

Book from the Sky: A Story with No Words

Natalee, TAG Member; Brooke, TAG Member; and Tiffany, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, February 7, 2014

Before we encountered Xu Bing's Book from the Sky, we passed by Ai Weiwei's Han Jar Overpainted with Coca-Cola Logo—and almost missed it. The pot, located in the ancient Chinese galleries, looks ordinary except for its iconic logo. This was where we started to learn that the contemporary Chinese art scene is born from the synthesis and refutation of tradition.

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Teen Blog

Tradition and Identity in Ink Art

Angeles, TAG Member; and Jacqui, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Friday, January 31, 2014

In Ink Art: Past as Present in Contemporary China, we came across many pieces of artwork that exemplify the contrast between contemporary and traditional art. One of these pieces was Family Tree, a series of nine photographs in which the artist Zhang Huan's face gradually becomes covered in ink and traditional calligraphy.

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Teen Blog

Ink Art's Merging of the Old and the New

Emily Z., TAG Member; Sage, TAG Member; and Genevieve, TAG Member

Posted: Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Upon first seeing Han Jar Overpainted with Coca-Cola Logo in the special exhibition Ink Art: Past as Present in Contemporary China, we were overwhelmingly reminded of one of the larger themes of modern Chinese art: the conflict between the progression of the modern and the preservation of the traditional. This Han dynasty pot emblazoned with the faded Coca-Cola logo struck us as an almost humorous representation of this conflict.

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Teen Blog

Contrast and Balance in Jewels by JAR

Chantal Stein, College Intern

Posted: Tuesday, January 14, 2014

It takes a minute for your eyes to adjust to the darkness in the exhibition Jewels by JAR (on view through March 9, 2014). The walls are black, the ceilings are high, and glass cases lined with red velvet are set into walls and columns. Warm lights behind the glass spotlight the artwork within.

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Teen Blog

How Did He Paint That?

Lawrence, Former High School Intern

Posted: Tuesday, December 31, 2013

There are a handful of paintings at the Met that made a huge impression on me when I first saw them. Two of them are Sanford Robinson Gifford's A Gorge in the Mountains (Kauterskill Clove) and Frederic Edwin Church's The Aegean Sea. Every time I see these paintings, I ask myself, "How did he paint that?!"

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Teen Blog

My Favorite Room at the Met

Lucie, Former High School Intern

Posted: Monday, December 23, 2013

My favorite room at the Met is gallery 735 because it houses John Vanderlyn's Panoramic View of the Palace and Gardens of Versailles. I first visited the gallery on the recommendation of a friend, and since then I've been back many times.

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Teen Blog

Diary of a Ceiling Fan

Helen, Former High School Intern

Posted: Monday, December 16, 2013

I constantly find myself looking up at the ceilings whenever I visit The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Turning my gaze upward allows me to clear my thoughts and forget about any commotion around me.

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Teen Blog

An International Take on Textiles

Brooke, TAG Member; and Tiffany, TAG Member

Posted: Monday, November 18, 2013

Though we tend to associate globalization with the modern, Western-dominated world of capital goods, in reality it began long ago with textiles. The current exhibition Interwoven Globe: The Worldwide Textile Trade, 1500–1800 is the first major exhibition to explore this international exchange of design ideas through the medium of textiles.

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Teen Blog

A Profusion of Blue and Yellow Feathers

Angeles, TAG Member; and Jill, TAG Member

Posted: Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The panels on view in the exhibition Feathered Walls: Hangings from Ancient Peru were created by the Wari peoples of southern Peru. Their makers hand-knotted blue and yellow macaw feathers one by one onto cotton and camelid hair using slipped overhand knots. The strings of feathers were then sewn in horizontal rows onto large cotton panels.

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Teen Blog

What Does One Do with a Wall Full of Feathers?

Sage, TAG Member

Posted: Thursday, October 31, 2013

Many questions surround the beautiful feather panels, created between about 600 and 1000 by the Wari peoples of Peru, that are currently on view in the exhibition Feathered Walls: Hangings from Ancient Peru. The simplistic juxtapositions of color and painstaking care put into them tantalize the mind and make one wonder what purpose the panels served.

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Teen Blog

A New Perspective on an Ancient Object

Maleficent Twemlow (a.k.a. Anna), TAG Member

Posted: Thursday, October 24, 2013

As a preface, I would just like to ask that you not take my excitement about the work above to be some kind of authoritative perspective on it—in other words, that you'll visit the Museum, see this piece and have a great, transcendent epiphany with the swelling baritone of a hallelujah chorus behind you. Perhaps it's just me being overzealous and getting unnecessarily pumped up about something as usual. But, for a second, let's be indulgent and allow me to express how this piece requires you to reconfigure your mind, and just how weird and interesting it is. Let's break it down for a second, shall we?

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Teen Blog

Chodhisone: Our 3D Creation in Plastic

Sage, TAG Member; and Katy, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The idea for our 3D sculpture came together after taking pictures of a Chinese chimera and a bodhisattva from the Asian Art galleries, along with Ritual Seat for a Noble (Osa' osa), currently on view in the Met's Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas galleries. From there, we took each of the photos and stitched them together using 3D printing software.

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Teen Blog

Monster in a Monster

Angeles, TAG Member; and Briana, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013

The inspiration for our 3D scanning and printing workshop project came from our mutual interest in both Asian and Greek mythology. Although we came across many potential subjects while getting to know the Museum's collection, we quickly decided to base our plastic sculpture on Greek mythological figures and Buddhist deities—combining animal and human forms to create a supernatural god.

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Teen Blog

Our Untitled 3D Sculpture

Sumura, TAG Member; and Matthew, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Monday, September 30, 2013

Before beginning the design process for our 3D sculpture, we were both inspired by three different sculptures currently on view at the Met: Lectern for the Reading of the Gospels with the Eagle of Saint John the Evangelist in the Medieval Sculpture Hall; Statue of the Goddess Sakhmet from the Egyptian Art collection; and Mourning Victory from the Melvin Memorial in the Charles Engelhard Court of The American Wing. With all of the artwork the Museum has to offer, it definitely seemed like choosing a subject to work with would be the most challenging part—but then the printing process began.

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Teen Blog

Pax Santi

Brooke, TAG Member; and Veronika, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Wednesday, September 18, 2013

As we walked through each gallery of the Met in order to determine the subject for our 3D sculpture, we were immediately inspired by the tranquility of Buddha Preaching the First Sermon at Sarnath in the Asian Art galleries. However, we were also intrigued by the fierceness of the Greek and Roman marble sculptures on display, and elected to combine both the head of the Roman Emperor Hadrian—currently on loan to the Museum—with the body of a lion.

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Teen Blog

Cleo and Her Friends

Alison, Teen Program Participant; and Nathaniel, Teen Program Participant

Posted: Friday, August 30, 2013

This past July, we and eight other high school students participated in the Metropolitan Museum's first 3D scanning and printing workshop for teens. During the weeklong intensive, we were introduced to the Met's collections of Asian, American, Oceanian, ancient Egyptian, and Roman art, and we then used specialized printers to convert photographs of some of these objects into 3D models.

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Teen Blog

Lollipop Trees on Concrete Tiles

Kristen, TAG Member

Posted: Thursday, August 15, 2013

What happened here? Did someone spill paint on these tiles? Is this supposed to be blood? Is there blood all over the roof of the Metropolitan Museum of Art?!

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Teen Blog

The Unexpected Humanity of the Roof Garden Commission

Maleficent Twemlow (a.k.a. Anna), TAG Member

Posted: Thursday, August 8, 2013

Upon first seeing Imran Qureshi's installation on the Museum's roof garden, I was immediately struck by how effectively it subverts one's expectations. Along with the rest of the Teen Advisory Group, I was simply informed that we would be visiting a "rooftop installation," which immediately brought to mind the kind of monolithic modernist sculpture that seems to be increasingly ubiquitous in outdoor art installations these days. Surprisingly, though, we were greeted with something much more subtle and thought-provoking.

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Teen Blog

The Poppy Field on the Rooftop

Tiffany, TAG Member

Posted: Thursday, August 1, 2013

Sudden violence in the United States, especially when unpredictable, triggers an immediate and mass reaction. This is hardly so in the case of Pakistan, however, a country where violence is the norm and not the exception. At the Museum's roof garden this summer, contemporary Pakistani artist Imran Qureshi challenges American viewers to immerse themselves in the bloodbath of civilians killed in sectarian conflicts far away from our own shores.

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Teen Blog

The Dividing Line

Karl, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, July 26, 2013

Imran Qureshi's installation on the Met's roof is abrupt. Looking across the roof, one is confronted by something of a geological layering. In the foreground, violence and bloodshed come to mind, and behind, the Met's stone superstructure separates you from the immediacy of Central Park's seemingly dense forests. Looking down at your feet, your confidence is partially shattered by the realization that you are walking on paint. Instinctively, my feet searched for an oasis of untainted stone.

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Teen Blog

Crossing Borders

Shivanna, TAG Member

Posted: Friday, July 19, 2013

The Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden at the Metropolitan Museum is a magnificent place to exhibit art high above Central Park. You have the warm sun, the sounds of nature, the clear blue sky, the green foliage, and a breathtaking view of the concrete jungle around you. Walking out onto the roof recently, I expected to see an immense sculpture. Instead, I was greeted by Pakistani artist Imran Qureshi's painted installation.

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Teen Blog

The Irony of Punk

Cheeky Swagger (a.k.a. Dan), TAG Member

Posted: Friday, July 12, 2013

I learned from visiting PUNK: Chaos to Couture that punk was an ironic movement and that its irony has contributed to its staying power. When punk started in the mid-1970s, it was dealing with a social landscape that had lost sight of its goals. The hippies said they wanted a revolution, but changing the world is not a passive exercise. That's where the punks came in.

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Teen Blog

Deconstructing Madame X

Maleficent Twemlow (a.k.a. Anna), TAG Member

Posted: Friday, July 5, 2013

In my drawing at left, I wanted to create a visual response of sorts to what I saw in PUNK: Chaos to Couture, namely the D.I.Y.: Hardware gallery.

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About this Blog

This blog, written by the Metropolitan Museum's Teen Advisory Group (TAG) and occasional guest authors, is a place for teens to talk about art at the Museum and related topics.