I spent four days in New York back in October 2007, one of my first trips outside of Europe. It is home to some of the great museums of the world, many of which I managed to visit in my relatively short time there.
The American Museum of Natural History is a classic of the genre. Established in 1869, the current museum occupies more than 2 million square feet, and is home to a huge variety of objects.
MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) is home to possibly the finest modern art collection in the world, including paintings by Bacon, Picasso, Warhol, Pollock, Van Gogh, Kandinsky, Monet, Mondrian, and Matisse among others. The number of classic paintings under one roof was quite overwhelming.
The collection at the Frick Collection was as impressive for Old Master paintings, but I don’t think photos were allowed, as I don’t have any. It was the same story at the Neue Gallerie, home to what was at the time the most expensive painting in the world, the beautiful Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I by Klimt.
At the Guggenhiem Museum photos were allowed in the entrance area of the impressive buildings, but not in the exhibitions. It is a unique place, with artwork displayed along ramps running around the building.
My favourite museum also didn’t allow photos unfortunately. The closest I have is from the Lower East Side where the Tenement Museum is located. The only way to visit is in small group tours, bringing to life the confined spaces in which generations of often immigrants lived and worked.
The third largest museum in New York, Brooklyn Museum was planned as the largest art museum in the world back in 1895 but struggled with funding. It has an impressively varied collection, housed in another grand building.
The Museum of the City of New York offered an extensive history of this fascinating place, including three rooms from the home of the Rockefellers.
To end with the mighty Metropolitan Museum of Art, the largest art museum in the United States, with over two million works. It was quite overwhelming to be honest, you could spend days exploring the 17 different departments.