Blogs/ Of Note/ Temporarily Tacet: The Musical Instruments Galleries Will Return in 2017

Temporarily Tacet: The Musical Instruments Galleries Will Return in 2017

One of the former Musical Instruments galleries, showcasing a selection of The Met's historic pianos

View of gallery 684 in The André Mertens Galleries for Musical Instruments prior to deinstallation

The Department of Musical Instruments closed its galleries on February 22, 2016, for a yearlong renovation and reinterpretation project. The reframed galleries will feature inspiring new displays and narratives that will invite visitors to explore the scope and artistry of instrument making and music across history and around the world within the context of The Met collection.

While the galleries are closed, we invite you to learn about the department's collection in a variety of ways: browsing the online collection, reading the new publication Musical Instruments: Highlights of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, learning more about the department's history in the multimedia feature A Harmonious Ensemble: Musical Instruments at the Metropolitan Museum, 1884–2014, or watching videos of the instruments in action on The Met's YouTube channel. Additionally, over the coming months, we will be providing updates on Of Note about the progress of the galleries and highlighting recordings from the department's archives.

This week we feature a live recording from an event that took place in May 2014, when the American String Quartet performed at The Met using four instruments from the Museum's collection: "The Antonius" and "The Francesca" violins by Antonio Stradivari; a 17th-century viola by Jacob Stainer; and a mid-19th-century violoncello by Jean Baptiste Vuillaume.

Composite image of four instruments (two violins, a viola, and a violoncello) from The Met collection

Clockwise from top left: Antonio Stradivari (Italian, 1644–1737). "The Antonius" Violin, 1711. Maple, spruce, ebony. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Bequest of Annie Bolton Matthews Bryant, 1933 (34.86.1 a). Antonio Stradivari (Italian, 1644–1737). "The Francesca" Violin, 1694. Maple, spruce, ebony. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Bequest of Annie Bolton Matthews Bryant, 1933 (34.86.2 a). Jacob Stainer (Austrian, ca. 1617–1683). Viola, ca. 1660. Spruce, maple, blackwood. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Purchase, Robert Alonzo Lehman Bequest, Fletcher Fund, 2012 Benefit Fund and Beatrice Francais Gift, 2013 (2013.910). Jean Baptiste Vuillaume (French, 1798–1875). Violoncello, mid-19th century. Spruce and maple. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Gift of Dr. Peter Blos, 1984 (1984.114.1)


Maurice Ravel, String Quartet in F Major, first movement, "Allegro moderato – très doux." Performed at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in May 2014 by the American String Quartet: Peter Winograd, violin; Laurie Carney, violin; Daniel Avshalomov, viola; and Wolfram Koessel, violoncello.

Related Link
The Met Store: Musical Instruments: Highlights of The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Comments / 4 comments

  • {{ comment.dateText }}