NYC – Metropolitan Museum of Art – Marble statue of Hermes
NYC art
Image by wallyg
Marble statue of Hermes
Roman, Imperial period, 1st or 2nd century, A.D.
Copy or adaptation of a Greek statue of the late 5th or early 4th century, B.C.
The left hand, top if the nose, and tips of some fingers of the right hand are restored.

The statue is almost intact, although the surface was strongly cleaned as was the custom in the eighteenth century. During that period, newly excavated ancient sculpture was cleaned and restored in Roman workshops before being sold to members of the European nobility. This work was acquired by English statesman William Fitzmaurice, second earl of Shelburne, who assembled a distinguished collection of antiquities at Landsowne House in London. The statue of Hemres once stood in the dining room at Landsdowne House, serving in the same decorative function that it doubtless once served in a Roman villa of the first and second century A.D. The dining room, designed by Robert Adam, is now at the Metropolitan Museum, where it is installed with other period rooms from England.

Gift of the Hearst Foundation, 1956 (56.234.15)

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The April 20, 2007 unveiling of the 30,000 square foot Greek and Roman Galleries concluded a 15-year project and returned thousands of works from the Museums permanent collection to public view. Over 5,300 objects, created between about 900 B.C. and the early fourth century A.D., are displayed, tracing the parallel stories of the evolution of Greek art in the Hellenistic period and the arts of southern Italy and Etruria and culminating in the rich and varied world of the Roman Empire from from the Late Republican period and the Golden Age of Augustuss Principate to the conversion of Constantine the Great in A.D. 312. The centerpiece of the new installation is the Leon Levy and Shelby White Court, a monumental, peristyle cour court with a soaring two-story atrium that links the various galleries and themes.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art‘s permanent collection contains more than two million works of art from around the world. It opened its doors on February 20, 1872, housed in a building located at 681 Fifth Avenue in New York City. Under their guidance of John Taylor Johnston and George Palmer Putnam, the Met’s holdings, initially consisting of a Roman stone sarcophagus and 174 mostly European paintings, quickly outgrew the available space. In 1873, occasioned by the Met’s purchase of the Cesnola Collection of Cypriot antiquities, the museum decamped from Fifth Avenue and took up residence at the Douglas Mansion on West 14th Street. However, these new accommodations were temporary; after negotiations with the city of New York, the Met acquired land on the east side of Central Park, where it built its permanent home, a red-brick Gothic Revival stone "mausoleum" designed by American architects Calvert Vaux and Jacob Wrey Mold. As of 2006, the Met measures almost a quarter mile long and occupies more than two million square feet, more than 20 times the size of the original 1880 building.

In 2007, the Metropolitan Museum of Art was ranked #17 on the AIA 150 America’s Favorite Architecture list.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art was designated a landmark by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1967. The interior was designated in 1977.

National Historic Register #86003556

Explore: December 9, 2007

// From Flicker

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