To celebrate the centennial of Richard Avedon’s birth in 1923, The Metropolitan Museum of Art will present a selection of the photographer’s most innovative group portraits in the exhibition Richard Avedon: MURALS, opening January 19, 2023. Although Avedon first earned his reputation as a fashion photographer in the late 1940s, his greatest achievement was his stunning reinvention of the photographic portrait. Focused on the short period between 1969 and 1971, this exhibition will explore a critical juncture in the artist’s career, when, after a hiatus from portraiture, he began working with a new camera and a new sense of scale. The exhibition will be organized around three monumental photomurals in The Met collection (the largest measures 10 x 35 feet) that depict groups of the era’s preeminent artists, activists, and politicians. Uniting the murals with session outtakes and contemporaneous projects, the exhibition will track Avedon’s evolving approach to group portraiture, through which he transformed the conventions of the genre.
The exhibition is made possible by Joyce Frank Menschel.
In Maya art—one of the greatest artistic traditions of the ancient Americas—the gods are depicted in all stages of life: as infants, as adults at the peak of their maturity and influence, and finally, as they age. The gods could perish, and some were born anew, providing a model of regeneration and resilience. Opening November 21, 2022, at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the exhibition Lives of the Gods: Divinity in Maya Art will bring together nearly 100 rarely seen masterpieces and recent discoveries in diverse media—from the monumental to the miniature—that depict episodes in the life cycle of the gods, from the moment of their birth to resplendent transformations as blossoming flowers or fearsome creatures of the night. Created by masters of the Classic period (A.D. 250–900) in the spectacular royal cities in the tropical forests of what is now Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico, these landmark works evoke a world in which the divine, human, and natural realms are interrelated and intertwined. Lenders include major museum collections in Europe, Latin America, and the United States, and many of these works have never been exhibited in the U.S., including new discoveries from Palenque (Mexico) and El Zotz (Guatemala).
The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced that Guyanese-British artist Hew Locke has been selected to create new works for The Met Fifth Avenue’s facade niches, the third in a new series of site-specific commissions for the exterior of the Museum. The Facade Commission: Hew Locke, Gilt will be on view September 16, 2022 through May 22, 2023.
Louise Bourgeois: Paintings is the first comprehensive exhibition of paintings produced by the iconic, French-American artist Louise Bourgeois (1911–2010) between her arrival in New York in 1938 and her turn to sculpture in 1949. The exhibition opens on April 12th.
Renowned for his powerful paintings of American life and scenery, Winslow Homer (1836–1910) remains a consequential figure whose art continues to appeal to broad audiences. Opening April 11, 2022, Winslow Homer: Crosscurrents will reconsider the artist’s work through the lens of conflict, a theme that spans his prolific career. A persistent fascination with struggle permeates Homer’s art—from emblematic images of the Civil War and Reconstruction that examine the effects of the conflict on the landscape, soldiers, and formerly enslaved people to dramatic scenes of rescue and hunting, as well as monumental seascapes and dazzling tropical works painted throughout the Atlantic world. The centerpiece of the exhibition will be The Met’s iconic The Gulf Stream, a painting that reveals Homer’s lifelong engagement with the charged subjects of race, geopolitics, and nature. Featuring 88 oils and watercolors, this major loan exhibition represents the largest critical overview of Homer’s art and life in more than a quarter of a century.
The Costume Institute’s 2022 spring exhibition, In America: An Anthology of Fashion—the second of a two-part presentation—will explore the foundations of American fashion through a series of sartorial displays featuring individual designers and dressmakers who worked in the United States from the 19th to the mid-late 20th century.
On Saturday, October 2, The Metropolitan Museum of Art will host MetFest, an afternoon filled with special programs, performances, art-making activities, behind-the-scenes tours, food experiences, and more, with artists and community partners from across the five boroughs. Taking place both outside—on The Met’s David H. Koch Plaza—and inside—at the Museum’s Fifth Avenue location—from noon to 6 p.m., MetFest will celebrate the resilience of New York City and its people and be a moment to reflect on the meaning and inspiration that art can bring to our lives. Programming will be both in person and online and offered in multiple languages. MetFest will be free on the plaza and free with Museum admission inside the building for audiences of all ages and abilities.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced today that it will unveil a new installation of two eighth-century Maya stone monuments, known as stelae, in its iconic Great Hall on September 2, 2021.
The two massive stelae—both significant long-term loans from the Republic of Guatemala—feature life-sized representations of influential Indigenous American rulers: a king, K’inich Yo’nal Ahk II (ca. A.D. 664–729), and queen, Ix Wak Jalam Chan (Lady Six Sky) (ca. A.D. 670s–741), one of the most powerful women known by name from the ancient Americas. The installation heralds the upcoming exhibition Lives of the Gods: Divinity in Maya Art, which is scheduled to open in fall 2022 and will highlight Maya visual narratives featuring a cast of gods: sacred beings that are personified elements of the cosmos, nature, and agriculture. The Great Hall display is also the first in a series of special exhibitions and installations that will present art of the ancient Americas, sub-Saharan Africa, and Oceania throughout The Met’s galleries while the Michael C. Rockefeller Wing is closed for a renovation project that will reenvision these collections for a new generation of visitors.
The Costume Institute’s next major exhibition will be a two-part show on view from September 18, 2021 through September 5, 2022. Part One, In America: A Lexicon of Fashion—opening in the Anna Wintour Costume Center on September 18, 2021 ~ will feature approximately 80 individual ensembles encased and arranged as “squares” in horizontal and vertical rows representing the qualities that collectively define American fashion. Part Two, In America: An Anthology of Fashion—opening in the American Wing period rooms on May 5, 2022—will explore the development of American fashion by presenting narratives that relate to the complex and layered histories of those spaces. Parts One and Two will close on September 5, 2022.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Civic Practice Partnership Artist-in-Residence, Miguel Luciano, is having a party and we’re all invited! The block party is a celebration of his new exhibition, on view at Hope Community Inc.’s Galeria del Barrio, and it is also a celebration of the culmination of Luciano’s there-year residency at The Met.
The New Woman of the 1920s was a powerful expression of modernity, a global phenomenon that embodied an ideal of female empowerment based on real women making revolutionary changes in life and art. Opening July 2, 2021 at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The New Woman Behind the Camera will feature 185 photographs, photo books, and illustrated magazines by 120 photographers from over 20 countries. This groundbreaking exhibition will highlight the work of the diverse “new” women who made significant advances in modern photography from the 1920s to the 1950s.
Four new sculptures created by American artist Carol Bove for The Met Fifth Avenue’s facade niches will be on view beginning March 1, 2021. The Facade Commission: Carol Bove:The Séances Aren’t Helping is the second commission to be featured on the facade of The Met.
Alice Neel: People Come First is the first museum retrospective in New York of American artist Alice Neel (1900–1984) in 20 years. This ambitious, career-spanning survey at The Met positions Neel as one of the century’s most radical painters, a champion of social justice whose longstanding commitment to humanist principles inspired her life as well as her art, as demonstrated in the survey’s approximately 100 paintings, drawings, and watercolors. Alice Neel: People Come First will be on view March 22 through August 1, 2021.
Between 1933 and 1942, The Metropolitan Museum of Art organized one of its especially noteworthy landmark educational initiatives to bring the Museum’s collection to as many New Yorkers as possible. Called the Neighborhood Circulating Exhibitions, the series consisted of small, thematic displays of select artworks presented in New York Public Library branches, high schools, city universities, and settlement houses. The effort, which was developed in response to an inquiry from a high school teacher, reached more than two million visitors and will be the focus of the exhibition Art for the Community: The Met’s Circulating Textile Exhibitions, 1933–1942, on view October 31, 2020, through June 13, 2021, in honor of The Met’s 150th anniversary.
The Met announced today the discovery of a painting by esteemed American artist Jacob Lawrence that has been missing for decades. The panel is one of 30 that comprise Lawrence’s powerful epic, Struggle: From the History of the American People (1954–56), and it will be reunited immediately with the series, now on view at The Met through November 1 in Jacob Lawrence: The American Struggle. Titled by the artist There are combustibles in every State, which a spark might set fire to. —Washington, 26 December 1786, the work depicts Shays’ Rebellion, the consequential uprising of struggling farmers in western Massachusetts led by Revolutionary War veteran Daniel Shays; it protested the state’s heavy taxation and spurred the writing of the U.S. Constitution and efforts to strengthen federal power. The panel is number 16 in the Struggle series.
The Costume Institute’s upcoming exhibition About Time: Fashion and Duration (on view October 29, 2020 to February 7, 2021) will trace 150 years of fashion, from 1870 to the present, along a disrupted timeline, in honor of the Museum’s 150th anniversary. Employing philosopher Henri Bergson’s concept of la durée—the continuity of time—the exhibition will explore how clothes generate temporal associations that conflate the past, present, and future. The concept will also be examined through the writings of Virginia Woolf, who will serve as the exhibition’s “ghost narrator.”
Returning to The Met for the 13th consecutive year, the exhibition P.S. Art: Celebrating the Creative Spirit of NYC Kids will feature works of art in a variety of media created by public school students in New York City. The exhibition will be on view from October 8, 2020, through February 14, 2021, at The Met Fifth Avenue in the Ruth and Harold D. Uris Center for Education. On the evening of October 8, there will be a private virtual opening ceremony with remarks at 5 p.m. by Max Hollein, Director of The Metropolitan Museum of Art; Richard A. Carranza, Schools Chancellor; and Alison Scott-Williams, President of Studio in a School NYC. P.S. Art 2020: Celebrating the Creative Spirit of NYC Kids is a project of the New York City Department of Education and Studio in a School NYC.
In anticipation of its reopening on August 29, The Metropolitan Museum of Art will unveil tomorrow a timely new work of art on its Fifth Avenue facade—for the first time dedicating the spaces usually used for exhibition banners to display art. The work, Yoko Ono’s DREAM TOGETHER (2020), offers a powerful message of hope and unity to the world. Created by the artist in response to the global COVID-19 crisis, the two banners, measuring 24 x 26 feet, are composed of black letters on a white field, with the word “DREAM” placed south of the Museum’s main entrance and the word “TOGETHER” to the north.
In 2020, The Metropolitan Museum of Art will celebrate the 150th anniversary of its founding with a dynamic range of exhibitions, programs, and public events. Highlights of the year will include the exhibition Making The Met, 1870–2020, on view March 30–August 2; the opening of the newly renovated and reimagined galleries devoted to British decorative arts and design in March; the display of new gifts throughout the Museum; a three-day-long celebration in June; and a story-collecting initiative.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art unveiled four installations on the facade of The Met Fifth Avenue, entitled The Facade Commission: Wangechi Mutu, The NewOnes, will free us. Wangechi Mutu was selected to create sculptures for The Met’s Fifth Avenue façade niches—the first-ever such installation on the Museum’s historic exterior—inaugurating a new annual artist commission series. The works were unveiled on September 9, 2019.
Where were you on July 20th, 1969? Like millions of people, you were probably glued to your television, watching the first images of American astronauts on the moon. Celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing on July 20th, The Metropolitan Museum of Art opens its doors to the exhibition, Apollo’s Muse: The Moon in the Age of Photography.
Through more than 250 objects dating from the seventeenth century to the present, The Costume Institute’s spring 2019 exhibition will explore the origins of camp’s exuberant aesthetic. Susan Sontag’s 1964 essay “Notes on ‘Camp‘” provides the framework for the exhibition, which examines how the elements of irony, humor, parody, pastiche, artifice, theatricality, and exaggeration are expressed in fashion.
The iconic instruments of Rock & Roll will go on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, with instruments played by artists such as Chuck Berry, Eric Clapton, Sheryl Crow, Bob Dylan, Don Felder, Kim Gordon, Jimi Hendrix, James Hetfield, Wanda Jackson, Joan Jett, Lady Gaga, Steve Miller, Joni Mitchell, Jimmy Page, Kate Pierson, Elvis Presley, Prince, Keith Richards, Patti Smith, Bruce Springsteen, Ringo Starr, Eddie Van Halen, St. Vincent, Tina Weymouth, Nancy Wilson, and others. Play It Loud: Instruments of Rock and Roll opens April 8th!
Take a photographic journey back in time at The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s exhibition Monumental Journey: The Daguerreotypes of Girault de Prangey ~ a display of Girault’s daguerreotype process using oversized plates and innovative formats to produce what is today the world’s oldest photographic archive. This is the first exhibition in the United States devoted to Girault, focusing on his Mediterranean journey, with this exhibit featuring approximately 120 of his daguerreotypes, supplemented by examples of his graphic work, watercolors, paintings, and his lithographically illustrated publications.