Spain, 1000–1200: Art at the Frontiers of Faith

August 30, 2021–February 13, 2022
Previously on view at The Met Cloisters, Gallery 002
Free with Museum admission


Communities of Christians, Muslims, and Jews lived side by side in Spain for centuries, creating vibrant artistic traditions that often intersected. For the first time since its inauguration at The Met Cloisters in 1961, the Fuentidueña Chapel gallery, which typically focuses on the Christian tradition, will present a group of works that testify to the diversity of Spanish medieval art. By telling a more nuanced story in this space, the exhibition will demonstrate the ease with which objects and artistic ideas transcended differences of belief. Placed in dialogue with each other, the silk textiles, ivory carvings, illuminated manuscripts, frescoes, and monumental sculptures featured in the show will reveal a dynamic, interconnected past that often mirrors the present.

The exhibition’s chronology, 1000 to 1200, corresponds to a pivotal era in the history of the Spanish Middle Ages—one that saw significant shifts in the balance of power between Christian and Muslim rulers, destabilizing long-standing social relationships and introducing new tensions among religious communities. Yet the visual arts make it clear that this was not a purely divisive age. In exploring how artists and patrons of the day drew from many sources of inspiration, negotiating the visual traditions of different religions, Spain, 1000–1200: Art at the Frontiers of Faith will showcase the richness and complexity of interfaith interaction. In so doing, the exhibition draws upon the concept of the frontier—a boundary that simultaneously separates and connects—as a metaphor for Spain as a place of artistic creation.

This exhibition will be accompanied by the Fall 2021 Met Bulletin.


The exhibition and Bulletin are made possible by the Michel David-Weill Fund.

Additional support for the Bulletin is provided by Tom and Diahn McGrath.

The Met’s quarterly Bulletin program is supported in part by the Lila Acheson Wallace Fund for The Metropolitan Museum of Art, established by the cofounder of Reader’s Digest.

Exhibition Objects

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Lion Relief, Sandstone with traces of paint, Spanish
ca. 1200
Hebrew Bible, Ink, tempera, and gold on parchment; leather binding, Spanish
1300–1350 (before 1366)
Pyxis, Elephant ivory, Spanish
ca. 950–75
Incense Burner, Bronze; cast, chased, and pierced
11th century
Camel, Fresco transferred to canvas, Spanish
first half 12th century (possibly 1129–34)
Coffret with the Legend of Guilhem, count of Toulouse, Walnut, painted, iron mounts, South French
South French
ca. 1200–1225
Crucifix, White oak with paint, gold leaf, and tin leaf (corpus); softwood with paint and tin leaf (cross), Spanish
ca. 1150–1200
The Virgin and Child in Majesty and the Adoration of the Magi, Master of Pedret  Spanish, Fresco transferred to canvas, Catalan
Attributed to the Master of Pedret (Spanish, Catalonia, 12th century)
ca. 1100

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Marquee: Camel from the Church of San Baudelio de Berlanga (detail), Spain, first half of the 12th century (possibly 1129–34). Fresco transferred to canvas. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Cloisters Collection, 1961 (61.219)