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Museum: Behind the Scenes at the…

Museum: Behind the Scenes at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

by Danny Danziger

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Substance: Vignettes of Met employees, derived from personal interviews. Wide range of positions, from janitor to director. All very short, but contain some flavor of the enterprise. ( )
  librisissimo | Aug 31, 2014 |
This is a wonderful book. I love the Metropolitan Art Museum and found it fascinating to go behind the scenes. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has visited the Met! ( )
  Whisper1 | Apr 18, 2008 |
This was an intriguing take on learning about a museum - examining not its collections, but its people. And some of the most interesting stories came from the non-curators. The perspective of the head of fire safety, the florist, the docent - all fascinating. Though of course the fixation of each curator on their area of specialty was interesting as well. Very enjoyable - should make my next visit even better.
  timepiece | Mar 25, 2008 |
I thought this was really inspiring. Danziger paints a portrait of the museum by interviewing every person who works there from the cleaning staff on up to the director. Each short chapter is one employee's story: their background, how they came to the museum, what they like about it and what they dislike. Danziger comments that often when he writes these kinds of books he uncovers lots of unhappiness and politics going on under the surface, but in this case almost everyone he talked to was adamant that the Met is a wonderful place to work. It definitely made me want to go see the place. Each of the curators talks about what he or she loves best in his or her own collection, including the things that tourists usually miss. I want to go see all those things now.
  Lindsayg | Oct 9, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 067003861X, Hardcover)

A unique oral portrait of the Met, drawing on interviews with everyone from the director to the security guards

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the greatest museums in the world. It is an enormous place that takes up five city blocks and has more than two million square feet of space, filled with treasures everywhere the eye can see. There are exquisite vases, jewelry, tapestry, baseball cards, Egyptian mummies, sculptures, and furniture, and many of the most famous and recognized paintings in the world, from Van Gogh to Rembrandt, Monet, and El Greco.

But this famous institution, which attracts four million visitors a year, is not just about objects. This is a place that is supported and maintained by people, which is what this wonderful book celebrates. In the fifty-two interviews in Museum, we meet some of the people who have given their lives to making the Met the success that it is. We are introduced to curators with endless knowledge who look after the collections; as well as cleaners; florists; police and security staff who maintain and secure the building; plus the philanthropists and millionaires who donate their money for new and wonderful art works, including well-known people like Henry Kravis and Annette de la Renta.

Danziger has a rare touch for getting just the right detail, and these interviews are informative, moving, and compulsively readable. Oral history at its best, Museum will appeal not only to the millions who visit the Met every year, but also to anyone with an interest in museums and art.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:26:00 -0400)

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Interviews with cleaners, curators, trustees, security officers, the director and many others associated with the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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