NYC Museums..Should I choose One?

Old Oct 1st, 2007, 04:51 PM
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NYC Museums..Should I choose One?

I only have 5 days in New York in November, and am curious about the museums. Never really had much experience with any, so am wondering if I really need to see any in NY. So, assuming that I will find the time and see at least one, and keeping in mind that I have only a general interest in seeing one ,which one would a novice with no particular interests enjoy the most?

I feel that by spending some time in NY that I would be missing something if I did not see something that they are so famous for, sort of like going to Disney World, and not going on any of the rides kind of thing. It is just so hard to pick when you don't know what you are missing.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 04:54 PM
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Then you should go to either the Metropolitan Museum of Art ("The Met") or the Frick.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 04:56 PM
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Without question, it's the Met, one of the world's greatest!
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 05:03 PM
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You two must be psychic because those were the 2 that I thought about first but had concerns because the Met is so large . Which one of these 2 would I get the WOW , that was interesting factor from? I am hoping that by seeing a great museum that I might be more inclined to want to visit more in the future.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 05:06 PM
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IFHO, I like the Frick better. It is smaller and more managable. The Met is fabulous but overwhelming to me.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 05:09 PM
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Considering you ask ...which one would a novice with no particular interests enjoy the most? I think that would definitely be The Frick because it is a wonderful small collection of art housed in a beautiful mansion. You will enjoy the mansion, and you won't be overwhelmed as you might be at the MET. The Frick has many delightful features, including an inner court and private rooms decorated in ways that will please you.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 05:17 PM
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The beautiful mansion definitely appeals to me and the size seems more manageable, however if I did go to the Met , and keeping in mind that I would only spend 2 0r 3 hours there at the most, which area would I most likely get the most enjoyment from? I feel silly asking strangers something when you know so little about my tastes but you guys on this board are so awesome at figuring out what it is we are trying to say that I trust your comments.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 05:20 PM
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The good thing about the Met is that is has just about everything.
The bad thing about the Met is that is has just about everything!

You need to have a plan.

You could take a tour, but if you're not a "museum person" you might just find it boring. I love museums, but still am not the biggest fan of "highlights" tours because there will always be areas you have no interest in, and the pace can be overwhelming in an attempt to be comprehensive.

Here are just a few ideas for the Met:

The Costume Institute: fashion in a museum--very easy to take!

Rooftop: Just go to take in the view (only until "late fall"--may or may not still be open)

Famous paintings: I took a young cousin to the Met years ago, and he was just floored by seeing, in person, some painting he had seen in a book. Just go and gawk at a Rembrandt, Vermeer, Picasso, Van Gogh...

Go to one of the recreated historical rooms or gardens (Chinese garden,Frank Lloyd Wright room)in the museum .

Musical Instruments collection? armor? Egyptian temple? all in the one museum.

Just don't try to get to everything, but if you want to, you can go to 3 or 4 of these spots, and whet your appetite in a hour.

Don't forget to stop in the great giftshop and buy some postcards--either before you go into the galleries, so you can decide what you want to see, or afterwards.

By the way, I really do like the Frick, and the small size is very manageable, but the range of the collection isn't as great. Some people find the more modern collections at the Met more to their taste, and will enjoy that more. For a self described "novice with no particular interests" I think the Frick could be disappointing.
(Frick fans--note that I said "could"--some people really won't enjoy Vermeer and Fragonard, so why not give them more choices??)
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 05:51 PM
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Janie, thanks for the suggestions on the Met. Your suggestions actually all pretty much sound like I would enjoy them (with the exception of the music, armour one), so it is back in the running again. I also liked the famous painters idea too. I am thinking now that maybe I should just go with the Met and break it down into small pieces so that the size does not intimidate me. After all NY is famous for it , so why not at least give it a try?
Thanks for everyone's suggestions, I really appreciate all your comments .
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 06:07 PM
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IMO the answer to this question depends on what kind of art you love. So I guess my answer to you is a question--what kind of art do you love?
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 06:18 PM
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The Met has highlight tours and various other tours mhttp://www.metmuseum.org/events/index.asp
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 06:23 PM
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Actually the armor display at the Met is pretty neat, with armored horses marching through it. My daughter, the Elizabethan history nerd, spent hours there. It's also centrally located. The Egyptian Temple of Dendur is also spectacular.

Visit the Met's web site, pick a couple of galleries or even a couple of specific objects that appeal. Choose them on their own merits, not necessarily on what you "like". Don't overlook any special exhibits that are on while you're in town.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 06:38 PM
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What sort of art do I love? Oh that is tough. I am such a novice, I really only know the masters and of them very little. But I do love photography, an art form, so do appreciate things like lighting, composition, portraiture,etc.I guess I would like to see things in person that I would have only seen in books, or heard about. I do love to learn/see new things which is why I think I need a visit to the museum so that I can expand my mind, I guess the goal of most travel visits.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 06:38 PM
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IMO, the Frick.
Because of its size - and because it has amazing art and is not overwhelming. I can't imagine you NOT enjoying it.
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 07:01 PM
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I've nothing against the Frick....but there's just no museum experience in New York that can compare with that of the Met. It's no contest!
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Old Oct 1st, 2007, 07:28 PM
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I agree with Howard-- ya gotta see the Met, beba!! Study the website, grab a plan of the museum when you get there, and for a 3 hour visit, identify three small areas of interest, and GO! If you love the experience, you can always hit the Frick another day.
Have fun!
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 05:39 AM
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Beba, if you like photography, you might log onto the websites of both the Metropolitan Museum and MOMA to see if there are any photography exhibits.

Whatever you do, don't try to see the entire Met. It will tire you out and you will become complacent to the great art that is there. See it the way NYers do -- catch a special exhibit and then view one or two of the permanent galleries, depending on your interests. The Egyptian art area was recently renovated and is spectacular. Of course, European painting and sculpture houses many classics you've seen in books and magazines. One of the other posters has mentioned many of the other choices. If you will be here late in Nov, you might go to the area where the Met puts its annual Christmas tree and view the unbelievable Italian nativity below it. There is lots to see, but don't try to take it all in at once.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 05:56 AM
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The Frick is the best small art museum in New York, but the real reason it would appeal to a novice is that the electronic art phone tour is included in the price. This will give you some useful background on the museum's most famous paintings. YOu have to pay extra for this at the Met. Though excellent, I'm turned off the huge crowds, especially in the busy fall season. Not that the Frick will be empty.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 06:54 AM
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I have to totally agree with everything NewbE said -- if you're doing one museum in NY, in my opinion it would be criminal to not go to the Met. Go to the website, browse through some of the collections, and make a short list of some collections you think might interest you. Mark these on the museum map when you get there, and enjoy. The Met has that "famous museum" feeling -- the grandeur thing Try to arrive as early as you can.

Please don't blast me for this... and I'm actually quite an art lover, but I'm not a fan of the Frick... not enough variety for me... just not my thing. Given that the original poster isn't quite sure of her/his specific tastes in art, I think she'd be better off with all the options the Met has to offer.
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Old Oct 2nd, 2007, 07:01 AM
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Actuallly, Carol, as much as I adore the Frick, I tend to agree with you: for someone who is not necessarily (or not yet) an art lover, the Frick may be too limited in its scope. The Met really does have something for everyone, IMO. I only hope the crowds aren't too awful for beba...
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