Getting Artsy in NYC

This past weekend, our family took one of our yearly trips to New York City. We go up at least 2-3 times a year as my husband’s sister, her husband, and our nephew live on the Upper East Side. We stay in hotel not too far from them, and were excited to see the Downton Abbey Exhibition that is featured in Midtown. As the weather was a balmy 6 degrees (yikes), we also planned to visit the Michelangelo Exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which also showcased the Rodin Exhibition that ended on Martin Luther King day. So, we were getting pretty artsy.

If you love Downton Abbey and watched every episode as we did, you will love this Exhibition. It’s part Universal Studios meets museum; there is a lot of interaction with video screens, so you’ll enjoy seeing the characters come to life. The ground floor represents Downton’s servants quarters and kitchen, and Ms. Patmore’s kitchen is on display, as is the dining room where Thomas, Mrs. Hughes, Daisy, and Carson all ate meals together. As you move up to the second floor, you’ll love the interactive video screens that make up Downton’s main rooms…it’s fun! Then, you’ll tour around and see artifacts, costumes, and memorabilia from the show, in addition to Mary’s room that was the set. Finally, on the third floor, you will see a wonderful assortment of costumes from the show. Honestly, the Exhibition was even better than I thought it would be.

Seeing Michelangelo’s drawings and several of his sculptures was a real treat, as well. I sometimes marvel that his work is in such great shape–that it has lasted all of these years, especially the drawings and sketches he put on paper. There are 300 drawings of his you can see and learn about; additionally, the museum projects an image of The Sistine Chapel on the ceiling in one area in color, and surrounded by that on the floor are the sketches that he drew prior to painting each of those segments of the art on the ceiling of the chapel. This was incredible to see. My husband and I have been to Italy and seen many of Michelangelo’s works, including The David, The Sistine Chapel, The Pietà, and many, many more. It takes my breath away, and I’m in awe of just how versatile and productive he was during his lifetime. There are so many incredible, gorgeous pieces of art.

Rodin’s exhibit featured many creative works he created over the years. The Thinker is featured along with many of his bronze sculptures from The Gates of Hell. Several busts and other sculptures are showcased, along with art created by other artists who were connected in some way to Rodin.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is so vast, it could take years to stroll through that particular museum and see all you want to see. Their collections are amazing, and I encourage anyone visiting New York to get a little artsy and visit The Met.


Stephanie Verni is Professor of Business Communication at Stevenson University and is the author of Inn Significant, Baseball Girl, and Beneath the Mimosa Tree. Along with her colleagues Leeanne Bell McManus and Chip Rouse, she is a co-author of Event Planning: Communicating Theory and Practice, published by Kendall-Hunt.

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