Art of Second Millennium B.C. Explored in Landmark Exhibition at Metropolitan Museum
Beginning around four thousand years ago in the lands of western Asia and the eastern Mediterranean, one of the first international ages in human history emerged. Intense exchange fostered a burst of creativity in Mesopotamia, Egypt, Anatolia, the Levant, and the Aegean in the second millennium B.C.—the time of the Middle and Late Bronze Ages. The quest for raw materials such as metals, semiprecious stones, and other exotic luxury goods led to contacts with the Iranian plateau and Central Asia. Within this lively sphere of interaction, societies that otherwise differed strongly in culture and language were linked by the exchange of objects and ideas. In response, new international styles and imagery arose, reflected in the art, trade and diplomacy that connected the Mesopotamian heartland with the regions "Beyond Babylon."
Rich Legacy of African Textiles on View in Metropolitan Museum Exhibition
Africa's extraordinary legacy of textile arts, with its explosive color and complex graphic statements, will be presented at The Metropolitan Museum of Art beginning September 30. Bringing together more than 40 works dating from the early 19th century to the present – including a spectacular silk and cotton kente prestige cloth woven in Ghana during the 19th century and a 30-foot-long installation work by contemporary artist Yinka Shonibare – The Essential Art of African Textiles: Design Without End will highlight the enduring significance of textiles as a major form of aesthetic expression across the continent. While examining some of the finest and earliest preserved examples of different regional textile traditions, the exhibition will relate these to works by eight contemporary artists, who draw inspiration from textiles in their explorations of other media ranging from sculpture, painting, and photography to video and installation art. Works selected for the exhibition are drawn primarily from the collections of the Metropolitan and the British Museum as well as several private collections in the U.S. and Europe.
Calder's Inventive Jewelry Featured in Metropolitan Museum Exhibition Opening December 9
American-born artist Alexander Calder (1898–1976) is celebrated for his mobiles, stabiles, paintings, and objets d'art. The landmark exhibition Calder Jewelry—to be on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from December 9, 2008, through March 1, 2009—is the first museum presentation dedicated solely to his extensive output of inventive jewelry. During his lifetime, Calder produced approximately 1,800 unique pieces of brass, silver, and gold body ornaments, often embellished with found objects such as beach glass, ceramic shards, and wood. Calder Jewelry will feature approximately 90 works—necklaces, bracelets, earrings, brooches, and tiaras—many of which were made as personal gifts for the artist's family and friends.
Sumptuous Italian Renaissance Works Celebrating Art and Love in New Exhibition at Metropolitan Museum
"It is unbelievable how much is spent on these new weddings…."
Modern Master Giorgio Morandi Featured in Retrospective Exhibition at Metropolitan Museum
"Nothing is more abstract than reality."
-Giorgio Morandi, 1955
Jewel-like Paintings from Medieval Italian Choir Books on View at Metropolitan Museum of Art
"We mingle our praises with those of God's angels, whom we cannot hear."
Cassiodorus (sixth-century Roman scholar and monk)
Christmas Tree and Neapolitan Baroque Crèche on Display for Holiday Season at Metropolitan Museum
The Christmas tree and Neapolitan Baroque crèche at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, a long-established yuletide tradition in New York, will be on view for the holiday season from November 25, 2008 through January 6, 2009. The brightly lit, 20-foot blue spruce – with a collection of 18th-century Neapolitan angels and cherubs among its boughs and groups of realistic crèche figures flanking the Nativity scene at its base – will once again delight holiday visitors in the Museum's Medieval Sculpture Hall. Set in front of the 18th-century Spanish choir screen from the Cathedral of Valladolid, with recorded Christmas music in the background and daily lighting ceremonies, the installation reflects the spirit of the holiday season.
SCHEDULE OF EXHIBITIONS SEPTEMBER 2008 - AUGUST 2009
EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: Information provided below is subject to change.
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Metropolitan Museum to Reopen Galleries for Byzantine Art and the Art of Medieval Europe
Some 900 outstanding examples of medieval art created between the fourth and 14th centuries return to view this fall in The Metropolitan Museum of Art's newly expanded Mary and Michael Jaharis Galleries for Byzantine Art and new Gallery for Western European Art from 1050 to 1300. The new galleries incorporate the recently acquired "Jaharis Byzantine Lectionary"—an important, rare, and beautifully ornamented liturgical manuscript from about 1100—in an apse-like space, while the former Medieval Tapestry Hall has been transformed into a grand space for the presentation of western European art from the early Middle Ages.
Contemporary Photographs Explore Truth and Illusion in Reality Check at Metropolitan Museum
More than any other type of picture, photographs seem to have a direct and natural connection to visible reality. Reality Check: Truth and Illusion in Contemporary Photography surveys the ways in which artists exploit illusionism in photography to blur the distinction between what is real and what is not. Among the works featured are photographs of staged scenarios and constructed environments that appear to be real, as well as real scenes or landscapes that appear strangely artificial. On view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from November 4, 2008, through March 22, 2009, Reality Check is the third installation in the Joyce and Robert Menschel Hall for Modern Photography, the Museum's new gallery for contemporary photographs.