The Morgan Library & Museum

The Morgan Library & Museum Once library of financier Pierpont Morgan—now a museum, research library, music venue, architectural landmark, and historic site.
(1584)

A complex of buildings in the heart of New York City, the Morgan Library & Museum began as the private library of financier Pierpont Morgan, one of the preeminent collectors and cultural benefactors in the United States. Today it is a museum, independent research library, music venue, architectural landmark, and historic site. A century after its founding, the Morgan maintains a unique position in the cultural life of New York City and is considered one of its greatest treasures.

Juneteenth marks a pivotal date in American history—June 19, 1865, when General Gordon Granger proclaimed the end of the...
06/19/2020

Juneteenth marks a pivotal date in American history—June 19, 1865, when General Gordon Granger proclaimed the end of the slavery in the state of Texas and, therefore, the entire Confederacy. Slavery was in its death throes, but the
institution was still legal in Kentucky and Delaware. It required ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment to rid the country, irrevocably, of slavery.
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This document commemorates approval of the amendment by the House of Representatives on January 31, 1865 (it had passed the Senate the previous April). On February 1, Abraham Lincoln signed his name to a number of copies, including this version on vellum.
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Not until December 18, 1865, did Secretary of State William H. Seward certify that the required number of states had ratified. On that date, the Thirteenth Amendment became part of the Constitution and, two and a half centuries after its initial establishment, slavery in the United States ceased to exist in it's current form.
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A resolution submitting to the legislatures of the several States a proposition to amend the Constitution of the United States: 38th Congress [Second session, Washington, D.C.]: manuscript, [approved 1865 Feb. 1]. MA 914. Department of Literary and Historical Manuscripts. #13th #juneteenth #thirteenthamendment

The Morgan proudly announces a solo exhibition of work by the Los Angeles–based artist Betye Saar (b. 1926). Best known ...
06/18/2020

The Morgan proudly announces a solo exhibition of work by the Los Angeles–based artist Betye Saar (b. 1926). Best known for incisive collages and assemblages that confront and reclaim racist images, Saar emerged in the 1960s as part of a wave of artists, many of them African American, who embraced the medium of assemblage. She went on to become one of the most significant artists working in this medium today.
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Opening at the Morgan on September 12, 2020 and running through January 31, 2021, "Betye Saar: Call and Response" is the first exhibition to focus on Saar’s sketchbooks and examine the relationship between her found objects, sketches, and finished works. Learn more: link in bio.
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Betye Saar, Supreme Quality, 1998. Washboard with stenciled lettering, soap bar with printed paper label, metal figurine with toy guns, tin washtub, fabric, clock, and wood stand. The Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Mortimer and Sara Hays Acquisition Fund. Photography by Tim Lanterman, Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. © Betye Saar. #BetyeSaar
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This exhibition is organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Betye Saar: Call and Response is made possible with lead corporate support from MorganStanley and lead support from the Ford Foundation. Additional support is provided by Agnes Gund, Louisa Stude Sarofim, The Lunder Foundation – Peter and Paula Lunder family,
and the Terra Foundation for American Art.

Join our Instagram Live tomorrow, June 18, 4PM EST, as curator Jennifer Tonkovich and Daria Rose Foner—experts on J. Pie...
06/17/2020

Join our Instagram Live tomorrow, June 18, 4PM EST, as curator Jennifer Tonkovich and Daria Rose Foner—experts on J. Pierpont Morgan and his Library—discuss the conception, construction, and use of the Gilded Age masterpiece.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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This Instagram Live is held in celebration of the publication of the “Inside the Morgan” series, now available in the Morgan Shop. Link in bio.

Beginning in 1983, Danny Lyon visited Haiti several times to photograph conditions under the corrupt and abusive regime ...
06/16/2020

Beginning in 1983, Danny Lyon visited Haiti several times to photograph conditions under the corrupt and abusive regime of Jean-Claude Duvalier. He made this photograph the month after Duvalier finally fled Haiti, ending his family’s 29 years in power.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Lyon felt Haiti’s story had been distorted by journalists who visited the country only briefly and then filed stories about specific moments of violence. He aimed to show not only strife but also peaceful day-to-day life. Here, a group of women and children pray in a market. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Did you know that June is #CaribbeanAmericanHeritageMonth? Adopted by the U.S. House of Representatives in 2005, the commemoration recognizes the significance of Caribbean people and their descendants in the history and culture of the United States.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Danny Lyon (b. 1942), Haitian women praying in the market, HAITI, March 1986. The Morgan Library & Museum, Purchased as the gift of Ronald R. Kass, 2016.157. © Danny Lyon/Magnum Photos. **As exhibited in the Morgan's 2019 exhibition "Among Others: Photography and the Group."**

In 1790, William Blake produced a trilogy of illuminated books called the Continental Prophecies that addressed the poli...
06/15/2020

In 1790, William Blake produced a trilogy of illuminated books called the Continental Prophecies that addressed the politically charged spirit of his age, embodied by the American and French revolutions.
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"America" depicts the oppression exercised by monarchies and religions represented by Urizen. Although godlike in appearance, Urizen is a legalistic, despotic figure.
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Another central figure is Orc, representing the spirit of revolt, who is frequently associated with images of fire. America exists in only fourteen copies, five of which were colored and printed during Blake's lifetime.
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Look closer: www.themorgan.org/collection/William-Blakes-World/40.
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William Blake (1757–1827), America: A Prophecy. Lambeth: Printed by William Blake, 1793. Relief etchings with hand coloring and white line etching
Copy A, printed ca. 1795. Purchased by Pierpont Morgan, 1909. PML 16134.

The competition might be over, but we’re still in love with your #morganportraits submissions. Keep ‘em coming!
06/14/2020

The competition might be over, but we’re still in love with your #morganportraits submissions. Keep ‘em coming!

Available online now: a selection of concerts that celebrate the power of music to transform, entertain, and console. Br...
06/13/2020

Available online now: a selection of concerts that celebrate the power of music to transform, entertain, and console. Browse here: www.themorgan.org/videos

Oscar Wilde's conviction that works of art ought to exist for their own sake is expressed dramatically in an 1891 letter...
06/12/2020

Oscar Wilde's conviction that works of art ought to exist for their own sake is expressed dramatically in an 1891 letter to a young man, Bernulf Clegg, contained in this bound collection of the author's manuscripts, now available to view online.
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Wilde told him, "Art is useless because its aim is simply to create a mood. It is not meant to instruct, or to influence action in any way. . . . A work of art is useless as a flower is useless. A flower blossoms for its own joy. We gain a moment of joy by looking at it.".
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This important letter, offering a concise expression of Wilde's artistic credo, is an extraordinary companion to one of the Morgan's greatest treasures, the manuscript of "The Picture of Dorian Gray," Wilde's fictional exploration of this very idea.
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Browse now: www.themorgan.org/collection/Oscar-Wilde
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Oscar Wilde (1854–1900)Cover of a volume of manuscripts and letters of Oscar Wilde, stamped in gilt with the Queensberry arms.Gift of Lucia Moreira Salles, 2008MA 7258. #PrideMonth #Pride #LGBTQAuthors #OscarWilde

On April 19, 1851, Henry David Thoreau’s neighbors gathered in Concord to celebrate, as they did every year, the symboli...
06/11/2020

On April 19, 1851, Henry David Thoreau’s neighbors gathered in Concord to celebrate, as they did every year, the symbolic start to the American Revolution. They came together at the spot where, in 1775, an assemblage of local militia had repelled a British advance after Paul Revere and others had sounded the alarm.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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But Thoreau was in no mood to celebrate. Massachusetts had just sent a man named Thomas Sims back to Georgia in compliance with the Fugitive Slave Act, which affirmed the rights of slaveholders by requiring the detention and return of “fugitives from labor.” Sims was publicly whipped, sent to jail, and put back on the auction block.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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How, Thoreau demanded, could we celebrate freedom and justice in the face of such a “moral earthquake”? Many of the words he wrote in his journal that April would make their way into his lecture “Slavery in Massachusetts,” a fierce indictment of American hypocrisy.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Read (and hear) the transcript: www.themorgan.org/exhibitions/online/thoreau/1⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Henry David Thoreau’s journal for 4 December 1850–7 July 1851. MA 1302.11. Purchased by Pierpont Morgan, 1909. (The quoted passage begins about three-quarters of the way down the manuscript page.) #Thoreau #Revolution #Protest

Two years ago, the Morgan added to its collections a group of drawings acquired from the Souls Grown Deep Foundation, wh...
06/10/2020

Two years ago, the Morgan added to its collections a group of drawings acquired from the Souls Grown Deep Foundation, whose mission is to preserve and disseminate the work of self-taught African-American artists from the Southeastern United States.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Beginning in 2014, the foundation approached cultural institutions to initiate gifts and purchases that would increase public access to the art of Thornton Dial, Lonnie Holley, the quilters of Gee’s Bend, and many more.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Learn more about the acquisitions: Standing Together: The Enduring Power of Black Art from the South. Link in bio.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Pages from Purvis Young (1943–2010), Sometimes I Get Emotion from the Game, early 1980s, ballpoint pen and marker, on paper glued to found book, 12 1/4 x 17 3/4 inches (31.12 x 45.09 cm). Gift of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation from the William S. Arnett Collection and purchase on the Manley Family Fund, 2018.106. © Purvis Young / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

It’s never too late to register to vote...until it is!.FYI, NYC residents, applications for Absentee Ballots must be pos...
06/09/2020

It’s never too late to register to vote...until it is!
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FYI, NYC residents, applications for Absentee Ballots must be postmarked by June 16.
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When Harvey Milk (1930–1978) campaigned to serve on the Board of Supervisors in San Francisco in 1977, it was his third try. This campaign brochure, designed by Jim Rivaldo and Dick Pabich, Milk’s campaign managers, details his policy positions on such issues as urban development, public transportation, child care, and public libraries.
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Milk won the race. He was the first openly gay elected public official in the State of California and one of the first nationwide. He was murdered ten months after taking office and is now one of the most legendary American figures in the history of the fight for queer equality.
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Friends of Harvey Milk for Supervisor
Campaign brochure, 1977
The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, GLC 09871.05

In the miniature space on the surface of this seal (just 3.9 cm in height), an artist created a contest of monumental pr...
06/08/2020

In the miniature space on the surface of this seal (just 3.9 cm in height), an artist created a contest of monumental proportions: a demonic lion faces a winged superhuman hero.
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The lion's threatening gesture and the tension of his sharp claws suggest his evil power. But the hero will prevail. Taller than the lion, he calmly dominates it, and the bull—the victim of the contest—remains in his power.
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The smooth muscular forms of the heroic figure are set off by his carefully detailed and ornamented flounced garment. Despite the violence of the action, the figures seem frozen in time—a result of the symmetry.
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A Winged Hero Contesting with a Lion for a Bull

between 701 B.C. and 601 B.C.
carnelian
Overall: 1 1/2 × 11/16 in. (3.9 × 1.8 cm)
The Pierpont Morgan Library, New York
Morgan Seal 747

The Morgan's arts in education programs are available for virtual field trips to School, Camp, and Community groups for ...
06/08/2020

The Morgan's arts in education programs are available for virtual field trips to School, Camp, and Community groups for grades K–12.
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Virtual Field Trip Themes:
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• Colors of the World: Illuminated Manuscripts in the Age of Exploration
• Reading a Building: J. Pierpont Morgan and His Library
• Mythical Creatures
• It’s Alive! Frankenstein at 200
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Link in bio to learn more!

“An awareness of historical context is the ultimate lens through which we can most fully understand the present and make...
06/05/2020

“An awareness of historical context is the ultimate lens through which we can most fully understand the present and make progress.”

A Message from Our Director: We Are Connected | www.themorgan.org/about/message-from-the-director
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Bob Adelman interpreted the 1964–65 World’s Fair theme, “Peace Through Understanding,” by representing the demographic breadth of the attendees. Out of the millions drawn to the attractions in Flushing Meadows Park, Queens, Adelman focused—through a telephoto lens—on a cross section of spectators seated on the steep, moving People Wall in the IBM Pavilion.
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Bob Adelman (American, 1930-2016), Peoples’ Wall, World's Fair, New York, 1965. Gelatin silver print. Purchased as the gift of Burton and Nancy Staniar. 2015.131, The Morgan Library & Museum. © Bob Adelman Estate. #museumsarenotneutral

The roots of #PrideMonth are in struggle, and this uplifting photo for the Gay Liberation Front poster would never have ...
06/04/2020

The roots of #PrideMonth are in struggle, and this uplifting photo for the Gay Liberation Front poster would never have been possible without the riots-turned-protests led by Queer POC at the Stonewall Inn in June 1969.
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In late June, a police raid inspired fierce resistance from the patrons of the Stonewall Inn in the West Village, NYC, led by Black, Queer trailblazers such as Marsha P. Johnson.
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Soon after, Jim Fouratt arrived on the scene to organize for the Gay Liberation Front (GLF), the first political group to cite homosexuality in its name. The GLF poster, bearing the slogan COME OUT!!, appeared in late spring 1970 in advance of the gay liberation march that marked the first anniversary of Stonewall.
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Peter Hujar
Gay Liberation Front Poster Image
1934-1987
1969
Gelatin silver print
sheet: 20 x 16 inches; image: 18 1/2 x 12 1/2 inches
Purchased on The Charina Endowment Fund.
2013.108:1.76 #blackstoriesmatter #marshapjohnson #stonewall #blacklivesmatter

The Morgan owes its very existence to the brilliance, tenacity, and spirit of Belle da Costa Greene—a Black woman who be...
06/03/2020

The Morgan owes its very existence to the brilliance, tenacity, and spirit of Belle da Costa Greene—a Black woman who became one of the most prominent American librarians and cultural leaders of the first half of the 20th century.
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She built one of the country’s finest collections of rare books and manuscripts in a landscape dominated by white male booksellers, art dealers, and scholars.
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We—the Morgan’s social media team—hold ourselves accountable for not sharing wide enough the contribution of this eminent Black figure, as well as not pushing hard enough to populate our feed with the art and words of non-white creators. We can and will do better to fill our social media channels and blog with the voices of the underrepresented.
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The Morgan is not a lending library, but in honor of Belle, please consider supporting those NYC institutions that do provide literature, escapes, home-away-from homes, and most importantly, community, to many of our Black neighbors: @bklynlibrary and @nypl.
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Photo: Library of Congress. #blacklivesmatter #blackvoicesmatter #amplifyblackvoices #librariesmatter

We express solidarity with our community, artists, writers, scholars, musicians, and colleagues, who experience oppressi...
06/02/2020

We express solidarity with our community, artists, writers, scholars, musicians, and colleagues, who experience oppression and racism. We believe that black voices matter. We believe that black lives matter.

The publication of “Fire!!” in 1926 is considered one of the crystallizing moments of the Harlem Renaissance..⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀C...
06/01/2020

The publication of “Fire!!” in 1926 is considered one of the crystallizing moments of the Harlem Renaissance.
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Contributing writers, poets, and artists such as Langston Hughes, Zora Neale Hurston, and Aaron Douglas sought to uproot and “burn” established modes of expression.
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Due to an actual fire at the building in which this issue was stored, only a handful remain today.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Fire!! a quarterly devoted to the younger Negro artists / premier edition edited by Wallace Thurman in association with Langston Hughes [and others]. V. 1, no. 1, Nov. 1926. New York : [publisher not identified], 1926. The Carter Burden Collection of American Literature.

In May 1960, activists initiated campaigns of nonviolent civil disobedience in the American South. At sit-ins, protester...
05/31/2020

In May 1960, activists initiated campaigns of nonviolent civil disobedience in the American South. At sit-ins, protesters sat at the counters of whites-only restaurants to await service and, when refused, remained seated, often drawing abusive treatment or arrest.
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Photographer Eve Arnold photographed Priscilla Washington, a twenty-year-old biology major at Virginia State College, as she trained to participate in a sit-in in Petersburg, Virginia. Arnold’s image emphasizes both the collective effort and the individual emotional cost of the fight for civil rights.
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It was not until the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that racial segregation in public settings and business practices was outlawed.
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Eve Arnold (1912–2012), A training school for Black sit-ins. They are harassed but taught not to hit back when harassed by Whites, Virginia, USA, 1960, from the series Non-Violence, gelatin silver print. The Morgan Library & Museum, Purchased on the Photography Collectors Committee Fund, 2017.286. © Eve Arnold/Magnum Photos @magnumphotos #civilrightsmovement #activist #evearnold #protest #civilrights

"Above all, I know that life for a photographer cannot be a matter of indifference. Opinion often consists of a kind of ...
05/30/2020

"Above all, I know that life for a photographer cannot be a matter of indifference. Opinion often consists of a kind of criticism. But criticism can come out of love.”
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Robert Frank—one of the most influential photographers of the 20th century—turned the camera lens onto the American people in the 1950s, creating his influential series, “The Americans.”
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The Americans: photographs by Robert Frank; introduction by Jack Kerouac. New York: Grove Press, 1959. The Morgan Library & Museum, The Carter Burden Collection of American Literature, PML 181400. ©Robert Frank, from The Americans; courtesy Pace/McGill Gallery, New York.

Active in New York in the 1980s and 1990s as a sculptor and draftsman, Al Taylor (1948–1999) found inspiration for his l...
05/30/2020

Active in New York in the 1980s and 1990s as a sculptor and draftsman, Al Taylor (1948–1999) found inspiration for his lyrical and witty compositions in banal objects and everyday situations. Driven by curiosity and a sense of humor, he drew maps of pet stains, imagined puddles hanging out to dry, and created elegant still-lifes out of assemblages of tin cans balanced on wires.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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During his short career, he produced more than 5,000 drawings, in which he combined technical skills and Old Master virtuosity with conceptual strategies based on chance and graphic systems such as charts and diagrams.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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On view online | The Drawings of Al Taylor⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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Al Taylor (1948–1999)⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Greek Puddles (with Fish Parts), 1992.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Gouache and ink on paper.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
Private collection, London; Promised gift, British Museum, Department of Prints & Drawings. Photography Glenn Steigelman. © 2019 The Estate of Al Taylor.⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
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The exhibition is made possible by generous support from the Sherman Fairchild Fund for Exhibitions, the Ricciardi Family Exhibition Fund, Alyce Williams Toonk, the Robert Lehman Foundation, and David Zwirner.

Address

225 Madison Avenue
New York, NY
10016

By subway: No. 6 to 33rd Street; No. 4, 5, 6 or 7 to Grand Central; B, D, F, Q to 42d Street. By bus: M2, M3, M4, Q32 to 36th Street. PATH to 33rd Street

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:30 - 17:00
Wednesday 10:30 - 17:00
Thursday 10:30 - 17:00
Friday 10:30 - 21:00
Saturday 10:00 - 18:00
Sunday 11:00 - 18:00

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(212) 685-0008

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About the Morgan

The Morgan Library & Museum began as the personal library of financier, collector, and cultural benefactor Pierpont Morgan. Today it is a museum, independent research library, music venue, architectural landmark, and historic site located in the heart of New York City.

A century after its founding, the Morgan remains committed to offering visitors close encounters with great works of human accomplishment in a setting treasured for its intimate scale. Its collection of manuscripts, rare books, music, drawings, and works of art comprise a unique and dynamic record of civilization, as well as an incomparable repository of ideas and of the creative process from 4000 BC to the present.

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