the museum of the twenty first century


Triumph of Virtues, Minerva Expelling the Vices from the Garden of Virtue, 1502. Andrea Mantegna. Now at the Louvre museum.

Isabella d’Este’s Studiolo

The fashion of studioli, or private studies, small rooms reserved for intellectual activities, spread in the 15th century in the Italian courts, bathed in Humanist culture.

Isabella d’Este, who married Francesco II in 1490, rapidly decided to create a studiolo in a tower of the old Castello di San Giorgio. The work on this project lasted more than twenty years.

She entrusted Mantegna with the first two canvases of the cycle, Parnassus (1497) and Minerva (1502), but considering his work out-of-date, she turned to the most famous painters of the new generation. In vain she solicited Giovanni Bellini, Leonardo da Vinci and Francesco Francia but, in 1505, she obtained only the disappointing painting by Perugino. Lorenzo Costa, appointed court painter at Mantegna’s death (1506), completed the decoration with two canvases delivered between 1506 and 1511.

Minerva Expelling the Vices from the Garden of Virtue, completed in 1502, contains ideas and motifs that had obsessed the artist from his beginnings, nonetheless leads one to consider that the artist played a determining role in its conception: the theme of Ignorance as enemy of Virtue, numerous inscriptions in different alphabets, clouds and a tree in human form, or the grotesque personifications of the Vices, chased by the dynamic and majestic warrior goddess.

Ever wondered how MoMA grows its collection? Curatorial assistant Nancy Lim explains the process. Stay tuned over the coming weeks for insights about works recently added to the collection. 

[Basim Magdy. Stills from A 240 Second Analysis of Failure and Hopefulness (With Coke, Vinegar and Other Tear Gas Remedies). 2012. 160 35mm color slides and two synchronized Kodak slide carousel projectors, 4 min. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Fund for the Twenty-First Century. © 2015 Basim Magdy]

Lost and Found|| Closed with sergeant-at-arms-bucky-barnes

After seventy years, her best friend was alive.

She could still see his face as he fell from that train. She’d watched him die. And yet, he was alive. He wasn’t at all the man she remembered, but it was him. After SHIELD and HYDRA had been brought down, she and Sam had begun the search for Bucky, but they weren’t finding much else besides dead ends.

She was at the museum again, sighing to herself as she stared at the wall dedicated to the last face she’d expected to see in the twenty-first century. It was fairly packed that day, and she ignored the people around her for the most part. 

But then she saw him, and the captain nearly tackled him in a hug. After actually thinking it through, however, she decided that wasn’t the greatest idea. She walked over, slowly, almost hesitantly, and planted herself beside him. For the longest time, or maybe it was only a fewmoments, she said nothing. But finally, she managed to utter a sentence. 

“You’re a hero, you know that?” she said.