The Met’s collections are exhilarating and inspiring – as well as overwhelming and exhausting, so it’s best to visit with a plan of action. The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s wide-ranging holdings encompass the entirety of human history and production; current shows on view include ones devoted to Buddhist art, European lace, British silver, Chinese carvings and Native American art, in addition to their bigger-ticket exhibitions and permanent collection of arms and armor, Asian art, American furniture, European paintings and much, much more.
The Met presents more than 30 special exhibitions and installations each year. Locals and visitors in the know will usually prioritize their time at the Met by first visiting those special exhibitions and shows (before museum-fatigue sets in) and then wandering to favorite areas and collections. If you want to be in the know about what’s hot at the Met, and plan your visit, you might want to check out the following ongoing and upcoming shows for fall:
Regarding Warhol: Sixty Artists, Fifty Years
September 18–December 31, 2012
This vibrant show displays 45 Warhol classics side-by-side with over 60 contemporary artists’ work to illustrate the Pop master’s influence and create a dialog between artists across generations.
Tomás Saraceno on the Roof: Cloud City
May 15, 2012–November 4, 2012
Argentinian artist Tomás Saraceno created a constellation of large, interconnected modules constructed with transparent and reflective materials for the Museum’s Roof Garden which visitors can enter and walk through. Make a reservation before it’s dismantled, and be sure to wear sneakers. It’s not physically demanding, but the views are well worth the climb.
Chinese Gardens: Pavilions, Studios, Retreats
August 18, 2012–January 6, 2013
A bit of a respite in the middle of the city, this exhibition explains the importance of enclosed gardens and plant arts in Chinese culture and features more than sixty paintings as well as ceramics, carved bamboo, metalwork, textiles and contemporary photographs, all drawn from the Metropolitan Museum’s permanent collections.
Faking It: Manipulated Photography Before Photoshop
October 11, 2012–January 27, 2013
Long before computer technology allowed us to easily alter images, artists were hard at work manipulating our perceptions of what we see.
After Photoshop: Manipulated Photography in the Digital Age
September 25, 2012–May 27, 2013
A companion to the Faking It show, this one covers contemporary photography from the Met’s permanent collection, concentrating on digitally altered images from the 1840s through the early 1990s.
Bernini: Sculpting in Clay
October 3, 2012–January 6, 2013
He was the master of 17th-century Italian sculpture; Gian Lorenzo Bernini’s small-scale clay models are on display for the first time, illustrating the thought process behind his famous statuary and the journey from master’s vision to workshop execution.
Turkmen Jewelry from the Collection of Marshall and Marilyn R. Wolf
October 9, 2012–February 24, 2013
Selected from an exquisite private collection of jewelry and decorative objects dating from the last 200 years, the jewelry, carpets and robes featured in this exhibit reflect the different styles and designs favored by different tribal groups. Handcrafted works from Teke, Yomut, and Kazakh jewelry-makers are highlighted.