The Metropolitan Museum of Art also known as The Met, located in Central Park , New York City is one of the world’s largest and finest art museums . Its collections include more than two million works of art spanning five thousand years of world culture, from prehistory to the present and from every part of the globe.
The Met is a universal museum: every category of art in every known medium from every part of the world during every epoch of recorded time is represented here and thus available for contemplation or study . There are several large museums in New York but the Metropolitan Museum of Art is truly gigantic. As of 2007, the Met measures almost 0.25 mile (400 m) long and occupies more than 2,000,000 square feet (190,000 m2)
The Met also includes a much smaller second location , The Cloisters, which features medieval art.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in 1870 by a group of American citizens. The founders included businessmen and financiers, as well as leading artists and thinkers of the day, who wanted to open a museum to bring art and art education to the American people. It opened on February 20, 1872, and was originally located at 681 Fifth Avenue.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded “to be located in the City of New York, for the purpose of establishing and maintaining in said city a Museum and library of art, of encouraging and developing the study of the fine arts, and the application of arts to manufacture and practical life, of advancing the general knowledge of kindred subjects, and, to that end, of furnishing popular instruction.” This statement of purpose has guided the Museum for more than a century.
‘The mission of The Metropolitan Museum of Art is to collect, preserve, study, exhibit, and stimulate appreciation for and advance knowledge of works of art that collectively represent the broadest spectrum of human achievement at the highest level of quality, all in the service of the public and in accordance with the highest professional standards. ‘
The size and diversity of the artwork on display is even more impressive . The Met collections include more than two million works of art spanning five thousand years of world culture, from prehistory to the present and from every part of the globe . The Egyptian Art gallery includes a whole temple that was shipped to America as a gift.
Represented in the permanent collection are works of art from classical antiquity and Ancient Egypt, paintings and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, and an extensive collection of American and modern art. The Met also maintains extensive holdings of African, Asian, Oceanic, Byzantine, and Islamic art. The museum is also home to encyclopedic collections of musical instruments, costumes and accessories, and antique weapons and armor from around the world. A number of notable interiors, ranging from 1st century Rome through modern American design, are permanently installed in the Met’s galleries.
Nearly five million people visit the Museum each year. Getting at least a little bit lost at the Met is inevitable. Floor plans help, but it is still difficult . Despite complexity, the galleries are arranged to help you navigate through with ease. If you get mixed up, there are always museum personnel nearby who can give you directions .
Visiting the entire Met is at least a two day ‘job’ . The Met is a must see when visiting New York City and is always worth another trip.