Each of them is a real experience, not just a cultural journey. They are different in size and collections and, however they are all interesting and well-maintained, some are suitable for everyone and a must-see, while others are recommended only to the most curious or the connoisseurs.
The Museum of Modern Art, also known as MoMa, is appealing to everyone thanks to its famous masterpieces but it’s also a place for modern art lovers who can visit it without prejudice.
The MoMa reopened in 2014 after a $400 million renovation.
The size of the place has doubled, and the reopening coincided with the 75th anniversary from its first inauguration. The museum was indeed opened nine days after the economic crisis of 1929 and its three founders were all ladies: Ms. Lillie Bliss (who donated her private collection to the museum when she died), Ms. Mary Quinn Sullivan (the famous art collector's wife) and Ms. Abby Rockefeller (married to the son of the richest man in the world). These three wealthy women decided to open a temporary gallery to exhibit contemporary and innovative works coming from Europe. At a time of desperation and crisis it was a new, almost inconceivable (yet successful), concept.
At the beginning it was founded as a private gallery, where members could donate money to host the artworks, and the concept was helping people to understand, enjoy and use the visual arts to comprehend the modern world. The temporary gallery later expanded to become a permanent collection and one of the most important museum of modern art in the world, visited by more than two and a half million people every year.
The MoMa museum now houses more than 100,000 artworks from all over the world, produced between the end of the 19th century and present days.
It collects modern and contemporary masterpieces that span through various fields: architecture to photography, from painting to design, from movies to multimedia projects. Amongst the thousands of works exhibited here, many of them are signed by the most celebrated modern and contemporary artists and some of its most famous works of art include: Van Gogh's ‘Starry Night’, Monet's ‘Water Lilies’, Picasso's ‘Demoiselles d'Avignon’, and ‘Campbell's Soup Cans’ by Andy Warhol are just a few amongst the most popular pieces in the museum, but there are also lesser-known works that probably are incomprehensible to most, perhaps even to the artists themselves!
Although I love art, I must confess that I cannot really appreciate some modern art expressions. I wanted to see Cezanne, Monet and Van Gogh, but the MoMa also gives space to temporary exhibits by younger artists and sometimes it’s hard for a non-expert eye to understand the concept behind a broken chair or metal cube.
New York's museums often offer you a free visit or pay-as-you-wish offer on certain days. Although museums like the MoMa are always full of tourists, locals usually come for free on Friday evening from 4 pm to 8 pm, that doesn’t allow you much time to visit the place but if you live here, you can make it almost a weekly date with your friends. Some are frightened by the large number of visitors who go to the entrance on this occasion, but the flow is managed quickly and efficiently and it’s beautiful to see the artworks at sunset during the summer months when the orange light is filtering through the large glass windows of the building.
In the summer, once the visit to the museum is finished, it is also possible to enjoy the sculptures of the patio while having a cool drink at the museum’s pretty café.
It’s a pretty interesting place because sometimes art lovers meet here to discuss the artworks and eavesdropping becomes very cool!
Many are the ideas and projects for the building, including that of converting the place into a luxury hotel.