The Guggenheim and Metropolitan Museums of Art Analytical Essay by julie

The Guggenheim and Metropolitan Museums of Art
A discussion of the Guggenheim and the Met and their success in stimulating and educating museum visitors.
# 6997 | 1,395 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2002
Published on Feb 07, 2003 in Architecture (Buildings) , Art (Artists) , Art (History) , Art (Fine Art)

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This paper discusses the Guggenheim and Metropolitan Museums of Art, describing and contrasting the two museums in the context of bringing art, culture and architecture to the public. Modern thought regarding museum architecture is also discussed. It also discusses the history of art museums in the past century. It examines the level of interaction between the art admirer and the art itself in several museums and accordingly judges their success.

From the Paper:

"Art museums have been through multiple metamorphoses in the last 100-plus years, from ornate Victorian cathedrals stuffed with artifacts, to flexible modernist boxes and vast salvaged industrial buildings. A museum building is often thought of as monumental sculpture, and is itself potentially the most important work in an institution's collection. How paintings and sculpture actually fit into it is, typically somewhat controversial. Museum founders realize that the public can best appreciate and become engaged in art when the level of interaction and personal participation is high. Mimi Gaudieri, the executive director of the Association of Art Museum Directors, and other enthusiasts among professionals in the field insist that there's no conflict between a museum's mission and high-profile architecture. "On the contrary, an exciting building lends itself to art," Gaudieri says. "It's part of the growth of the whole museum field. Years ago we were just sleepy institutions with no profile, and all of a sudden things have changed. Museums have woken up. We are much more aware of the community and are working more closely with it." Current museums incorporate inviting lobbies, lecture halls, libraries, cafes and shops, recognizing that while they display art, they also must draw the interest of the public (and potential donors) with a holistic appeal (Lloyd 2001)."

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