Rogues Gallery

The Metropolitan, Gross writes, “is a huge alchemical experiment, turning the worst of man’s attributes—extravagance, lust, gluttony, acquisitiveness, envy, avarice, greed, egotism, and pride—into the very best, transmuting deadly ...

Rogues  Gallery

Rogues Gallery

“Behind almost every painting is a fortune and behind that a sin or a crime.” With these words as a starting point, Michael Gross, leading chronicler of the American rich, begins the first independent, unauthorized look at the saga of the nation’s greatest museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In this endlessly entertaining follow-up to his bestselling social history 740 Park, Gross pulls back the shades of secrecy that have long shrouded the upper class’s cultural and philanthropic ambitions and maneuvers. And he paints a revealing portrait of a previously hidden face of American wealth and power. The Metropolitan, Gross writes, “is a huge alchemical experiment, turning the worst of man’s attributes—extravagance, lust, gluttony, acquisitiveness, envy, avarice, greed, egotism, and pride—into the very best, transmuting deadly sins into priceless treasure.” The book covers the entire 138-year history of the Met, focusing on the museum’s most colorful characters. Opening with the lame-duck director Philippe de Montebello, the museum’s longest-serving leader who finally stepped down in 2008, Rogues’ Gallery then goes back to the very beginning, highlighting, among many others: the first director, Luigi Palma di Cesnola, an Italian-born epic phony, whose legacy is a trove of plundered ancient relics, some of which remain on display today; John Pierpont Morgan, the greatest capitalist and art collector of his day, who turned the museum from the plaything of a handful of rich amateurs into a professional operation dedicated, sort of, to the public good; John D. Rockefeller Jr., who never served the Met in any official capacity but who, during the Great Depression, proved the only man willing and rich enough to be its benefactor, which made him its behind-the-scenes puppeteer; the controversial Thomas Hoving, whose tenure as director during the sixties and seventies revolutionized museums around the world but left the Met in chaos; and Jane Engelhard and Annette de la Renta, a mother-daughter trustee tag team whose stories will astonish you (think Casablanca rewritten by Edith Wharton). With a supporting cast that includes artists, forgers, and looters, financial geniuses and scoundrels, museum officers (like its chairman Arthur Amory Houghton, head of Corning Glass, who once ripped apart a priceless and ancient Islamic book in order to sell it off piecemeal), trustees (like Jayne Wrightsman, the Hollywood party girl turned society grand dame), curators (like the aging Dietrich von Bothmer, a refugee from Nazi Germany with a Bronze Star for heroism whose greatest acquisitions turned out to be looted), and donors (like Irwin Untermyer, whose collecting obsession drove his wife and children to suicide), and with cameo appearances by everyone from Vogue editors Anna Wintour and Diana Vreeland to Sex Pistols front man Johnny Rotten, Rogues’ Gallery is a rich, satisfying, alternately hilarious and horrifying look at America’s upper class, and what is perhaps its greatest creation.

More Books:

Rogues' Gallery
Language: en
Pages: 560
Authors: Michael Gross
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2009-05-05 - Publisher: Crown

“Behind almost every painting is a fortune and behind that a sin or a crime.” With these words as a starting point, Michael Gross, leading chronicler of the American rich, begins the first independent, unauthorized look at the saga of the nation’s greatest museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In
Rogues' Gallery
Language: en
Pages: 352
Authors: Matthew Blackman, Nick Dall
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2021-06-19 - Publisher:

Corruption in South Africa is nothing new. Rogues' Gallery shows that dodgy dealings have always been a national pastime, under Dutch, British, and apartheid rule.
Rogues' Gallery
Language: en
Pages: 244
Authors: Philip Hook
Categories: Art
Type: BOOK - Published: 2017-01-26 - Publisher: Profile Books

Philip Hook takes the lid off the world of art dealing to reveal the brilliance, cunning, greed and daring of its practitioners. In a richly anecdotal narrative he describes the rise and occasional fall of the extraordinary men and women who over the centuries have made it their business to
Rogues' Gallery
Language: en
Pages: 528
Authors: John Oller
Categories: True Crime
Type: BOOK - Published: 2021-09-21 - Publisher: Penguin

From the beginnings of big-city police work to the rise of the Mafia, Rogues' Gallery is a colorful and captivating history of crime and punishment in the bustling streets of Old New York. Rogues' Gallery is a sweeping, epic tale of two revolutions, one feeding off the other, that played
Suspect Identities
Language: en
Pages: 381
Authors: Simon A. COLE, Simon A Cole
Categories: Social Science
Type: BOOK - Published: 2009-06-30 - Publisher: Harvard University Press

"Cole excavates the forgotten and hidden history of criminal identification--from photography to exotic anthropometric systems based on measuring body parts, from fingerprinting to DNA typing"--Jacket.

Popular All Time

Reflections on the Psalms
The Holy Word for Morning Revival - Crystallization-study of Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Volume 2
Battle Cry
Cleaning Up Your Mental Mess
The Templars and the Shroud of Christ
Crazy Faith
Where Do We Go from Here?
The Holy Word for Morning Revival - Crystallization-study of Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Volume 1
NIV, Holy Bible, Red Letter Edition
Mere Christianity
Live No Lies
Relationship Goals
You Are Stronger than You Think
The Screwtape Letters
Get Out of Your Head
Don't Give the Enemy a Seat at Your Table
The Story of Tibet
Gentle and Lowly

Recent Books: