The facade of NYC's Metropolitan Museum of Art has never been fully finished

It sure seems like a completed structure at first glance. But look closer. Specifically, look at the piles of stone blocks stacked on top of the columns.

Those blocks were hauled up there during construction—around the turn of the 20th century. They were supposed to be carved into sculptures representing "Music", "Architecture", "Painting" and, ironically, "Sculpture". Instead, the stone has sat there for 110 years, through two major renovations, un-carved and largely ignored.

The Daytonian in Manhattan blog has the full story on this.

Via Amy Vernon


  1. strange that they were put up there at all if unfinished. The sculptor wouldn’t be expected to do the work way up there right? You’d think they’d be sculpted in a studio and lifted into place..

    1.  Well, I for one think the museum would look awesome with a couple of Pasqual Pinon gargoyles staring down.

  2. They should do what my elementary school did when I was in second grade.. get kids to paint (or in this case, sculpt out of clay) an image, have a round of judging and voting done by the kids, and the winners got their art enlarged and painted onto the walls of the gym for decoration.

  3. Just noticed those blocks in July on my last visit – I thought it was some sort of sly comment – almost like Michelangelo’s slaves left half uncarved.

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