In honor of The Met’s 150th anniversary, Art for the Community will highlight a series of groundbreaking exhibitions organized by the Museum between 1933 and 1942. Almost a quarter of New York City’s population visited “Neighborhood Circulating Exhibitions,” which were developed in response to an inquiry from a Queens high school teacher. This remarkable initiative brought selections from the Museum’s collection to as many New Yorkers as possible, through a series of small, traveling exhibitions displayed in high schools, public libraries, and other public institutions across the five boroughs.
This installation will showcase the important role of European textiles in this educational effort, with a selection of textiles displayed alongside documents from The Met’s archives. These highlights will be reunited with an extraordinary series of 1930s photographs capturing the original events, their locations, and their visitors. Exhibits will range from Italian Renaissance velvet to French eighteenth-century printed cotton, and will include the first showing in decades of The Met’s exquisite cope made for Antonio Barberini, nephew of the infamous Pope Urban VIII.
Art for the Community
The Met’s Circulating Textile Exhibitions, 1930–40
October 31, 2020–June 13, 2021
The Met Fifth Avenue
1000 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10028