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New York's Top 10 : Metropolitan Museum of Art (part 1)

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One of the world’s great art museums, the Metropolitan is a veritable collection of museums, spanning 5,000 years of culture from every part of the globe. Each of its specialized galleries holds an abundance of treasures. It was founded in 1870 by a group who wanted to create a great art institution in America, and began with three private European collections and 174 paintings. The present holdings number over two million. The original 1880 Gothic Revival building by Calvert Vaux and Jacob Wrey Mould has been expanded many times. Recent additions include courts with huge windows overlooking Central Park.

  • 1000 5th Ave at 82nd St

  • 212 535 7710

  • www.metmuseum.org

  • Open 9:30am–5:30pm Tue–Thu & Sun, 9:30am–9pm Fri & Sat (galleries cleared 15 mins before closing time)

  • Adults $20, seniors $15, students $10, children under 12 and members free


Gallery Guide

The Costume Institute and Robert Lehman Collection are on the ground floor. The 1st floor includes the American Wing, European Sculpture and Decorative Arts, Egyptian Art, and Greek and Roman galleries; the 2nd floor has European Paintings, and 19th-Century European Paintings and Sculpture.


Entrance, Metropolitan Museum of Art

There is a cafeteria, bar (Fri & Sat), and two cafés inside. The Roof Garden Café is accessed from the first floor.


If time is short, the European Paintings on the second floor, Egyptian Art on the first, and the American Wing will give you a sense of the greatness of this enormous institution.


Weekend evenings are less crowded and offer the advantage of bar service and live music.



Top 10 Exhibits
  1. European Painting

    The museum’s 2,500 Old Master and 19th-century European paintings form one of the greatest collections in the world and include many instantly recognizable masterpieces. Special strengths include the Rembrandts and Vermeers, and the many Impressionist and Post-Impressionist canvases.

  2. Egyptian Art

    The largest collection of Egyptian art outside Cairo includes masks, mummies, statues, jewelry, the Tomb of Perneb, and the spectacular Temple of Dendur, c.15B.C., reassembled as it appeared on the banks of the Nile.

  3. Michael C. Rockefeller Wing

    Masks, wooden sculpture, gold and silver ornaments, Pre-Columbian gold, ceramics and stone from Mexico and Peru, and works of art from the Court of Benin in Nigeria are highlights among 1,600 objects of primitive art covering 3,000 years, and three continents.

  4. American Wing

    Tiffany glass, paintings, and period rooms from the 17th to 20th centuries. Undergoing restoration; check ahead which sections are open.

  5. Robert Lehman Collection

    This extraordinary private collection, includes Renaissance masters, Dutch, Spanish and French artists, Post-Impressionists and Fauvists, plus ceramics and furniture.

  6. Costume Institute

    Women’s fashions from ballgowns to mini-skirts, and menswear from the French courts to the present day; annual shows draw the crowds.

  7. Asian Art

    The most comprehensive collection in the West features paintings, sculpture, ceramics, and textiles.

  8. Lila Wallace Wing

    The Metropolitan has a growing display of art from 1900 to the present day, with works from Picasso to Jackson Pollock.

  9. European Sculpture and Decorative Arts

    One of the museum’s largest collections reflects the development of art in Western Europe, and includes architectural settings, French and English period rooms, tapestries, and sculptures by Rodin and Degas.

  10. Roof Garden

    From May to October the Iris and B. Cantor Roof Garden boasts outstanding annual displays of 20th-century sculpture. The garden also offers a fine opportunity to enjoy a drink with a peerless view of Central Park and the surrounding skyline.

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