The Met Cloisters

The Met Cloisters The Met Cloisters, located on four acres overlooking the Hudson River in northern Manhattan's Fort Tryon Park, is the branch of the Museum dedicated to the art, architecture, & gardens of medieval Europe.
The Met Cloisters, located on four acres overlooking the Hudson River in northern Manhattan's Fort Tryon Park, is the branch of the Museum dedicated to the art, architecture, and gardens of medieval Europe. Deriving its name from the medieval cloisters that form the core of the building, it presents a harmonious and evocative setting for more than 2,000 exceptional artworks and architectural elements from the medieval West.
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The Met Cloisters, located on four acres overlooking the Hudson River in northern Manhattan's Fort Tryon Park, is the branch of the Museum dedicated to the art, architecture, and gardens of medieval Europe. Deriving its name from the medieval cloisters that form the core of the building, it presents a harmonious and evocative setting for more than 2,000 exceptional artworks and architectural elements from the medieval West. Accessibility The Museum is committed to making its collection, buildings, programs, and services accessible to all audiences. The Met Cloisters offers events for visitors with disabilities on a regular basis. For more information about accessibility and programs for visitors with disabilities at The Met Cloisters, contact [email protected] or call 212-650-2280 during Museum hours.

Looking at this plaque through today’s lens, it seems that Jesus’ disciples knew the value of face-to-face meetings—no Z...
05/28/2020

Looking at this plaque through today’s lens, it seems that Jesus’ disciples knew the value of face-to-face meetings—no Zoom technology here! Six of them sit on a bench, with Saint Peter at the center. One, thinking, strokes his beard; Saint John, at far right, is eager to jump into the discussion. It looks a bit like a press conference.

But the Acts of the Apostles paints a different picture. Fifty days after Easter, as the disciples met in Jerusalem for the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, there was a sudden rush of wind, and “tongues of fire” bizarrely appeared over each of their heads. Jesus’ followers began speaking all at once in different languages, making such a ruckus that people thought they were drunk.

How does the enamel convey that drama? Barely at all, it would seem. But the goldsmith has assumed that we will detect God’s presence in this sedate gathering. Peter’s halo glows red hot. Lines emanating from God’s hand to the disciples carry lightning force, illuminating their haloes on contact with touches of red and yellow. The energy in the room is awesome, its divine source undeniable. Pay close attention to this vitally important message, the goldsmith seems to say.

Plaque with the Pentecost, South Netherlandish, ca. 1150–75. Champlevé and translucent enamel on copper gilt. 65.105. #pentecost #TheMetCloisters #MetAnywhere #enamel #goldsmithing

As we emerge from our quarantined slumbers, will everyone feel like Rip van Winkle, a bit scruffy and out of touch? Or w...
05/21/2020

As we emerge from our quarantined slumbers, will everyone feel like Rip van Winkle, a bit scruffy and out of touch? Or will we see a miracle in survival? Both a medieval legend and Sura 18 of the Qur’an would seem to argue for the latter. In The Cloisters stained glass from Rouen Cathedral, Emperor Theodosius rides forth to honor seven Christians who awakened after centuries of sleeping in a cave in which they had sheltered. A Persian miniature from « The Book of Omens, » drawing on the account in Sura 18 (called « al-kahf », « the cave »), pictures the sleepers themselves. It includes a detail that seems to us crucial and entirely believable: a loyal dog, named Qitmir, curls up alongside them.⁣

First image: Theodosius Arrives at Ephesus, from a Scene from the Legend of the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus, ca. 1200–1210. Pot-metal glass, vitreous paint. 1980.263.4. ⁣
Second image: "The Seven Sleepers of Ephesus", Folio from a Falnama (Book of Omens), ca. 1550. Ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper. 35.64.3. #medievalart #islamicart #quran #sevensleepers #Rouen #MetAnywhere #TheMetCloisters @metislamicart

Medieval cloistered monks and nuns chose to live a life apart from the rest of the world, enclosed within their monaster...
05/14/2020

Medieval cloistered monks and nuns chose to live a life apart from the rest of the world, enclosed within their monasteries. The decorations of their cloisters hint at the rich, imaginative experiences had by groups of individuals who treasured the contemplative, interior life of the mind.⁣

Picture a monk of the 12th-century Benedictine community of Saint-Michel de Cuxa examining this sculpture comparing humans with apes. Itself a commentary on the human ability to use the mind for spiritual improvement, the image would have sparked a number of different ideas for the medieval monastic viewer to meditate upon.⁣

Capital from the Cloister of Saint-Michel de Cuxa, carved in the present-day French Pyrenees, 1130-1140. Marble. 25.120.617. #contemplation #meditation #saintmicheldecuxa #medievalart #catalanpyrenees #MetCloisters #Met150 #MetAnywhere

For many faiths, undertaking pilgrimage – a journey to a holy place – is an important part of religious practice. But wh...
05/07/2020

For many faiths, undertaking pilgrimage – a journey to a holy place – is an important part of religious practice. But what about when travel is simply not possible? For some, there are also great spiritual benefits to imagining oneself in sacred place. For such virtual or imagined pilgrimages, pictures can provide powerful inspiration.⠀

During the Middle Ages, illuminated manuscripts offered a way for “armchair pilgrims” to travel imaginatively to saints’ shrines and biblical sites. This prayer book made for a French aristocrat includes pictures of sacred landmarks, as well as images of people traveling – perhaps to inspire such spiritual journeys.⠀

The Limbourg Brothers (Franco-Netherlandish, active France, by 1399–1416). In order: folios 173r, 20r, 185v, 223v, and 185v-186r, from The Belles Heures of Jean de France, duc de Berry, 1405–1408/1409. Tempera, gold, and ink on vellum. 54.1.1a, b. #stayhome #pilgrimage #virtualpilgrimage #bellesheures #MetCloisters #Met150 #MetAnywhere

Are you one of the many people taking comfort from a beloved pet during this difficult time? You’re certainly not alone....
04/30/2020

Are you one of the many people taking comfort from a beloved pet during this difficult time? You’re certainly not alone. This statue celebrates not only Saint Roch, who was miraculously cured of the bubonic plague during the 14th century, but also the loyal dog who brought him bread and licked his sores during his illness. In art, Saint Roch is usually shown with his canine companion.

This statue depicts Saint Roch pointing to a painful swelling in his thigh known as a bubo – one of the symptoms of the bubonic plague. The small dog jumps up on his leg, drawing attention to the saint’s ailment while offering a bread roll carried in its mouth.

Statue of Saint Roch, early 16th century. Normandy, France. Oak with paint and gilding.
25.120.239a, b. #saintroch #sanrocco #dogs #mansbestfriend #rome #medievalart #TheMetCloisters #Met150 #MetAnywhere #dogsofinstagram

Happy World Book Day! In this 15th-century manuscript illumination, St. Catherine reads diligently in her study. That is...
04/23/2020

Happy World Book Day! In this 15th-century manuscript illumination, St. Catherine reads diligently in her study. That is one spectacular bookstand! This vibrant illumination was painted by the Limbourg Brothers, among the most celebrated artists of their day. Commissioned for the wealthy duke of Burgundy, this manuscript is the only work completed entirely by the Limbourg brothers to survive today.⁣ Swipe through for a closer look.

The Limbourg Brothers (Franco-Netherlandish, active France, by 1399–1416). St Catherine in Her Study (folio 15r), from the Belles Heures of Jean de France, duke de Berry, 1405-1408/1409. Tempera, gold, and ink on vellum.54.1.1a, b. #TheMetCloisters #WorldBookDay #manuscript #illumination #France @ The Met Cloisters

#MetTwinning has inspired a lot of creativity, but this one is our favorite. Thank you to @carrielou72 for making this d...
04/14/2020

#MetTwinning has inspired a lot of creativity, but this one is our favorite. Thank you to @carrielou72 for making this delightful recreation of “The Unicorn in Captivity.”🦄🐶
.
The Unicorn Rests in a Garden (from the Unicorn Tapestries), 1495-1505. Wool warp with wool, silk, silver, and gilt wefts. #TheMetCloisters #MetAnywhere #MuttropolitanMuseum

In the heart of Beijing, literally a stone's throw from the Forbidden City, lies the enormous complex of the Peking Unio...
04/09/2020

In the heart of Beijing, literally a stone's throw from the Forbidden City, lies the enormous complex of the Peking Union Medical College & Hospital, founded by the then newly established Rockefeller Foundation in 1917/1921. The inaugural president of the Foundation was John D. Rockefeller, Jr., who in 1925 would provide the necessary funds for The Met to purchase the George Grey Barnard collection of medieval art that would become The Met Cloisters. Looking at these pictures a Cloisters staff member took only last year, we cannot help wondering how the staff of PUMC Hospital, like those in hospitals all over the world, heroically face today's unprecedented challenges and human tragedies. A brief history of PUMC now appears on plaques set into nearby sidewalks, some of which are pictured above. #JohnDRockefellerJr #GeorgeGreyBarnard #PUMCHospital #TheMetCloisters #Beijing #MetAnywhere

The Book of Exodus tells how the ancient Israelites, sheltered in their homes, were « passed over, » and spared the rava...
04/07/2020

The Book of Exodus tells how the ancient Israelites, sheltered in their homes, were « passed over, » and spared the ravages of the Angel of Death. With that ancient tale echoing in our ears these days, we are particularly attuned to images in the Prato Haggadah (on loan from The Jewish Theological Seminary @jtslibrary ). Here two men solemnly present a giant, golden matzoh, the unleavened bread emblematic of the celebration of Passover. Read more at the following link, also linked in our bio for your convenience. https://www.metmuseum.org/blogs/in-season/2016/the-prato-haggadah
#TheMet #themetcloisters #passover #jewishtheologicalseminary @ The Met Cloisters

If you missed last Saturday's workshop on the Lechón mask, celebrating Carnival and the Dominican Republic's Independenc...
02/27/2020

If you missed last Saturday's workshop on the Lechón mask, celebrating Carnival and the Dominican Republic's Independence Day, don't worry--the workshop repeats this Saturday from 12 pm to 2:30 pm in the Pontaut Chapter House here at The Met Cloisters. Diego Espaillat, local Dominican-American artist, and Little Dominican Republic partner with the Museum to present a workshop with storytelling and hands on activities. More information is available on Little Dominican Republic's page, as well as on our website. Registration is closed for the hands on project, however all visitors are encouraged to join us in learning about and designing the mask.
https://www.metmuseum.org/events/programs/met-creates/carnival-masks-from-the-dominican-republic

This Saturday, February 22nd, and Saturday, February 29th, local community organization Little Dominican Republic celebrates the Dominican Republic’s Independence Day in partnership with The Met Cloisters. Using storytelling and hands-on activity, Washington Heights-born and raised Dominican-American artist Diego Espaillat will lead a workshop in our Pontaut Chapter House. Participants will gain an understanding of the symbolism and history of carnival masks while collaboratively decorating a Lechón mask from the city of Santiago de los Caballeros, DR.

Registration for participants has closed but we encourage visitors this Saturday, and next, to observe the workshop and learn about Dominican culture with us. More information is available on Little Dominican Republic's page or via The Met's website, linked below.
https://www.metmuseum.org/events/programs/met-creates/carnival-masks-from-the-dominican-republic

Images: Left: Diego Espaillat. Right: Quatrefoil Roundel with Arms and Secular Scenes, 1490–1500, German. The Met Cloisters Collection, Samuel P. Avery Memorial Fund, 1911 (11.120.1)

The Judy Black Garden in Cuxa Cloister is currently filled with pots of forced daffodils, hyacinths, and anemones as we ...
02/26/2020

The Judy Black Garden in Cuxa Cloister is currently filled with pots of forced daffodils, hyacinths, and anemones as we await spring. Grown onsite by the gardens department, the fragrance, beauty and color of our indoor flowers are a welcome distraction from the gray New York winter. #themetcloisters #gardens #flowers #wintergardening @ The Met Cloisters

This Saturday, February 22nd, and Saturday, February 29th, local community organization Little Dominican Republic celebr...
02/18/2020

This Saturday, February 22nd, and Saturday, February 29th, local community organization Little Dominican Republic celebrates the Dominican Republic’s Independence Day in partnership with The Met Cloisters. Using storytelling and hands-on activity, Washington Heights-born and raised Dominican-American artist Diego Espaillat will lead a workshop in our Pontaut Chapter House. Participants will gain an understanding of the symbolism and history of carnival masks while collaboratively decorating a Lechón mask from the city of Santiago de los Caballeros, DR.

Registration for participants has closed but we encourage visitors this Saturday, and next, to observe the workshop and learn about Dominican culture with us. More information is available on Little Dominican Republic's page or via The Met's website, linked below.
https://www.metmuseum.org/events/programs/met-creates/carnival-masks-from-the-dominican-republic

Images: Left: Diego Espaillat. Right: Quatrefoil Roundel with Arms and Secular Scenes, 1490–1500, German. The Met Cloisters Collection, Samuel P. Avery Memorial Fund, 1911 (11.120.1)

This is the final weekend to see The Colmar Treasure: A Medieval Jewish Legacy! From the exhibition page (link in our bi...
01/11/2020

This is the final weekend to see The Colmar Treasure: A Medieval Jewish Legacy!


From the exhibition page (link in our bio):

A cache of jeweled rings, brooches, and coins—the precious possessions of a Jewish family of medieval Alsace—was hidden in the fourteenth century in the wall of a house in Colmar, France. Discovered in 1863 and
on view in an exhibition at The Met Cloisters, the Colmar Treasure revives the memory of a once-thriving Jewish community that was scapegoated and put to death when the Plague struck the region with devastating ferocity in 1348–49.

A generous loan of the Musée de Cluny, Paris, the Colmar Treasure is displayed alongside select works from The Met Cloisters and little-known Judaica from collections in the United States and France. Although
the objects on view are small in scale and relatively few in number, the ensemble overturns conventional notions of medieval Europe as a monolithic Christian society. The exhibition points to both legacy and loss, underscoring the prominence of the Jewish
minority community in the tumultuous fourteenth century and the perils it faced.

The Colmar Treasure is on view in the Glass Gallery at The Met Cloisters through January 12, 2020.
#themetcloisters #jewishhistory #medievalhistory #jewelry @ The Met Cloisters

Today was the last refreshment of our handmade holiday decorations for the season. Freshly polished lady apples, roses, ...
01/03/2020

Today was the last refreshment of our handmade holiday decorations for the season. Freshly polished lady apples, roses, and other fresh cut flowers were added to candelabras and Main Hall arches. This is the last weekend to enjoy The Cloisters' medieval-inspired holiday decorations. While you are visiting, be sure to smell the aromatic, potted jasmines currently in bloom in the Cuxa Cloister. #themetcloisters #christmastide #newyear #tradition #plants #roses #jasmine #nycmuseums @ The Met Cloisters

The Met Cloisters is searching for a Managing Horticulturist to lead our internationally-recognized gardens. If you are ...
12/30/2019

The Met Cloisters is searching for a Managing Horticulturist to lead our internationally-recognized gardens. If you are interested in this opportunity, please check out the position profile on LinkedIn (link in bio). #themetcloisters #gardening #horticulture

Following the freezing rain in New York City this week, The Met Cloisters was transformed into an icy wonderland. Enjoy ...
12/19/2019

Following the freezing rain in New York City this week, The Met Cloisters was transformed into an icy wonderland. Enjoy this collection of photos all submitted by various staff. We couldn’t help but each document the new and beautiful landscape. #themetcloisters #winterwonderland #seasonsgreetings #ice #landscape @ The Met Cloisters

Five grand arches, the centerpiece of the Christmastide decorations at The Met Cloisters, were installed last week. Visu...
12/16/2019

Five grand arches, the centerpiece of the Christmastide decorations at The Met Cloisters, were installed last week. Visual evidence for medieval holiday decorations is rare, but references survive in carols and other sources. Evergreens feature heavily in all our designs, reminders of the coming spring and of eternal life since they remained green while all other trees were bare. Holly and ivy are the most significant plants associated with the medieval celebration of Christmastide and can be seen on the arches as well as in our galleries during the winter. #medievaldecoration #christmastide #holidaysatthecloisters #themetcloisters #evergreen

Caleb, our managing horticulturist, and his team are busy putting up our medieval holiday decorations today! This annual...
12/12/2019

Caleb, our managing horticulturist, and his team are busy putting up our medieval holiday decorations today! This annual tradition is supported by the helping hands of all museum staff and volunteers—our decorations are handmade from fresh materials every year. Stop by between December 13, 2019 and January 6, 2020 to enjoy the season with us! #medievaltraditions #christmastide #themetcloisters #themet #nycholidays #nycmuseum #winter #holly

Join us today for an afternoon of talks and discussion presented by experts from around the world exploring the Jewish c...
10/27/2019

Join us today for an afternoon of talks and discussion presented by experts from around the world exploring the Jewish community, art, and viticulture of medieval Alsace, France. Talks will be presented in the Fuentidueña Chapel free to all visitors with museum admission from 2 pm to 4 pm. Please note that space is limited -- seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. These talks are presented in conjunction with the exhibition The Colmar Treasure: A Medieval Jewish Legacy on view through January 12, 2020. https://www.metmuseum.org/events/programs/met-speaks/free-lectures/the-colmar-treasure-a-medieval-jewish-legacy-afternoon-of-talks

Continuing from our previous post, Sempervivum tectorum was also known as Jove’s beard, for its tightly clustered leaves...
10/08/2019

Continuing from our previous post, Sempervivum tectorum was also known as Jove’s beard, for its tightly clustered leaves said to resemble a beard. A favorite plant at The Met Cloisters, we grow multiple pots of this succulent, some of which are seen here on the parapets of the 12th-century Cuxa Cloister. The juice from the leaves was used medicinally to treat skin inflammations or burns and to relieve pain. Laying bruised leaves across the crown of one’s head would reportedly staunch a nosebleed, though we are a bit dubious… #medievalmedicine #succulents #themetcloisters #beardorplant

Sempervivum tectorum, also known as Jupiter’s beard, houseleek, or hens and chicks, among other names, is one of the sig...
10/03/2019

Sempervivum tectorum, also known as Jupiter’s beard, houseleek, or hens and chicks, among other names, is one of the signature plants at The Met Cloisters. This succulent’s use as a magical protection against lightning can be traced through the Middle Ages back to antiquity, where it was planted on tile and thatch roofs. The Capitulare de Villis, an indispensable 9th-century source for medieval gardens, instructs the gardener to grow houseleek on the roofs to protect Charlemagne’s imperial estates from fire.
Houseleeks are among the plants grown in large pots on the West Terrace at the Museum, which is actually the roof of a workspace below, taking advantage of its traditional, protective properties. Swipe through for a photo of the West Terrace plants and view of the Hudson river and New Jersey Palisades. #themetcloisters #magicalprotection #hensandchicks #hudsonriver #nycviews @ Palisades Interstate Park

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Comments

leave the city (ny) and find refuge here. wonder!
A peaceful oasis in upper Manhattan. Make sure you see the Anglo Saxon cross of Edward the Confessor, the 'Cloisters Cross'.
I finally visited today since I had free time in NYC on this trip. By doing so, I discovered the best place in the U.S., bar none. Words are inadequate.
HELLO people à USA. i'm a french writer and my next roman is beginning in the cloisters museums. I need details of each cloisters and their arts. Please, have you photographs for me? I Have never been in New-York and I don't want to say stupidities and wrong descriptions. my mail is [email protected] or on my page facebook. THANKS of all my heart
I love the Cloisters: The tapestries and the original archways. The Rockefellers knew how to do it; they also purchased the land opposite the Hudson River to preserve the look of Medieval Europe. Amazing place--and also the largest Medieval Museum in the US. Jim
You were very lucky to tour this beautiful place!
I wish you gave more details on the content of the upcoming talks
One of my favorite museums in New York! I think you are a hidden gem :) I included The Cloisters on my travel blog recently, check it out!