Press release

Medieval and Renaissance Treasures from London's Victoria and Albert Museum to Go on View at Metropolitan Museum May 20

Exhibition dates: May 20 – August 17, 2008
Exhibition location: Wrightsman Exhibition Gallery
Press preview: Monday, May 19, 10:00 a.m. – noon

The Victoria and Albert Museum in London holds one of the world's finest collections of European decorative arts. Thirty-five of its masterpieces will be on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art beginning May 20, 2008, in the exhibition Medieval and Renaissance Treasures from the Victoria and Albert Museum, while the V&A prepares a new suite of galleries for its collection. Dating from 300 to 1600, the exhibition will include superb examples of sculpture, metalwork, ceramics, and glass that are rarely lent. Most have never been on view in New York.

These mostly small-scale works of art are highly prized for their beauty, the value of their materials, and the exquisite workmanship that marks their creation. Among the highlights will be the Carolingian ivory cover of the Lorsch Gospels, an ivory statuette of the crucified Christ by Giovanni Pisano, Donatello's bronze Putto with Fish, a pair of gilt-bronze statuettes of prophets by Hubert Gerhard, and the Codex Forster I, one of Leonardo da Vinci's precious notebooks.

The exhibition was organized by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

The exhibition is made possible by The David Berg Foundation.

It is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and Humanities.

Medieval and Renaissance Treasures from the Victoria and Albert Museum will provide a rare opportunity to see these works together before they are installed in the new Medieval and Renaissance Galleries opening at the V&A in fall 2009.

At the Metropolitan, the exhibition is organized by Peter Barnet, Michel David-Weill Curator in Charge, Medieval Art and The Cloisters, and Ian Wardropper, Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Chairman, Department of European Sculpture and Decorative Arts.

Publication and Related Programs

The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated booklet featuring the 35 Medieval and Renaissance works to be on view in New York. Published by V&A Publications and distributed in North America by Harry N. Abrams, Inc., the catalogue will be available in the Metropolitan Museum's book shops ($27.50 hardcover).

A variety of education programs will be offered in conjunction with the exhibition at the Metropolitan, including a Sunday at the Met program to be held on June 22.

The exhibition will also be featured on the Museum's website at

Prior to its showing at the Metropolitan, the exhibition was on view at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, and Speed Art Museum, Louisville. Afterward, it will travel to the High Museum of Art, Atlanta, and Millennium Galleries, Sheffield, before the works are installed in new galleries at the V&A in fall 2009.

April 28, 2008

Press resources