The Department of Drawings and Prints boasts more than one million drawings, prints, and illustrated books made in Europe and the Americas from around 1400 to the present day. Because of their number and sensitivity to light, the works can only be exhibited for a limited period and are usually housed in on-site storage facilities. To highlight the vast range of works on paper, the department organizes four rotations a year in The Robert Wood Johnson, Jr. Gallery. Each installation is the product of a collaboration among curators and consists of up to one hundred objects grouped by artist, technique, style, period, or subject.
This installation commemorates the 350th anniversary of the death of the great Dutch draftsman, painter, and printmaker Rembrandt van Rijn. On display are a selection of drawings and prints by the artist, from both the Department of Drawings and Prints and the Robert Lehman Collection, as well as an assortment of ephemeral material related to the etching revival and the cult of Rembrandt in the nineteenth century. Also on view are etchings by Charles Meryon and late nineteenth-century French color prints, recent acquisitions of French drawings, and a section focusing on the theme of trompe l'oeil in works on paper.
Drawings and other works by the American architect Frank Lloyd Wright are also on view, including several from a recent acquisition that significantly expanded the Museum's holdings of the architect's work. A related exhibition, Frank Lloyd Wright Textiles: The Taliesin Line, 1955–62, will simultaneously be on display in the Antonio Ratti Textile Center.
Explore the materials and techniques of printmaking in this new online feature, which uses detailed descriptions, GIFs, and works from The Met collection to illustrate five different techniques—all of which are still employed by artists today, in much the same way they were hundreds of years ago.
Read an assortment of blog articles that discuss works from the exhibitions and permanent collection of the Department of Drawings and Prints.
Rembrandt (Rembrandt van Rijn) (Dutch, 1606–1669). Self-Portrait Etching at a Window, 1648. Etching, drypoint, and burin; fourth of nine states, plate: 6 1/8 x 5 1/16 in. (15.5 x 12.9 cm); sheet: 6 7/16 in. (16.3 cm). The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Sylmaris Collection, Gift of George Coe Graves, 1920 (20.46.12)