A day spent visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art is always a good one. One could easily spend a week wandering the galleries and still not see everything. From ancient art to medieval tapestries to modern impressionism, it’s amazing how many centuries cram into a single museum. I’ve been fascinated with the museum since 4th grade when I read “From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler“. In the book, two siblings runaway from home to stay at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Any one else remember that book? Did it make you want to run away to the Met too?
My favorite part of the Met is the Impressionists, I love their Monet collection. It spans from early works in the 1860′s to final works in the early 1900′s. I find the evolution of Monet’s paintings absolutely breathtaking.
Another favorite part of the Met is the rooftop garden. A lovely summer phenomenon, the roof is open from mid May through October. With a back drop of Central Park and its bordering buildings, a sculpture collection designed to withstand the outdoor elements is a feature of the garden. Equally as enticing, especially to locals, is the bar featuring $8 beers and pricey cocktails along with a priceless view. They keep the museum open late, until 9pm, on Fridays and Saturdays and a drink on the roof makes for a lovely evening.
This year the roof features a single sculpture by Argentinian artist Tomás Saraceno, “Cloud City”. Viewers climb up into the sculpture (one must obtain a separate ticket to with a viewing time allotment, only a certain number of people are allowed on the structure at one time) becoming part of the art.
I was just there for the drink and the view, climbing into the sculpture may have to wait until tourist season dies down a bit. However, my experience left nothing to be desired, I highly recommend it. I did not stay for the sunset, but I’m sure it’s lovely from up there- nature’s art accenting human’s art.
For those of you who may not know, the Met is suggested donation. This means pocket change (I will often pay $1) gets you access to amazing art, an incredible day or evening. If you’re just going up to the roof for a drink and the view, any moral obligation to pay more is easy to ignore. Combined with a warm breeze and good company, it truly is a fantastic New York City summer activity.