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Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Canada
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Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

We want to see one museum when we visit in December. We have done all the usual spots. Do you have a recommendation...............I think I would like both spots, but only have time for one.

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New York City, New...
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1. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Both good in different ways. Would you prefer to see great art or how someone lived? The Frick was built and intended as a gallery/museum, but the Morgan Library is where JP lived and worked.

If I have to pick one, it'd be the Frick over the Morgan.

New York City, New...
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2. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Perhaps the special exhibitions that will be in place come December will influence your selection:

www.themorgan.org/exhibitions/upcoming.asp

http://www.frick.org/exhibitions/future.htm

New York City
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3. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Actually, itwas the Frick was built as Frick's private home, while the Morgan was only Morgan's library, although he did have his private office there too. (Morgan's house stood where the Annex building of the Library is, and his daily business office was down at JP Morgan and Co., at Wall and Broad.)

I love them both -- but the Frick has more paintings and decorative arts, while the Morgan concentrates on books.

Edited: 03 September 2011, 18:07
DC
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4. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Kate has it exactly wrong. Henry Clay Frick lived in the building that houses his collection, while JP Morgan lived about a block away from the building that housed his library. The Frick has a spectacular collection of old masters and the house itself is quite a show. The Morgan Library is primarily about books but also has short-term exhibitions. The building was substantially expanded a few years ago, so the real "JP Morgan Library" is only a part of what you now see.

Oops. I took a little break and GWB scooped me, so just take this as confirmation.

Edited: 03 September 2011, 18:26
Columbus, Ohio
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5. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

I've never been to the Morgan Library, but the Frick is pretty amazing. It's also a great museum if you're short on time - it's small, so you can still see a lot in a couple hours.

New York City, New...
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6. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Perhaps I didn't phrase it well, but I don't have it wrong. The areas you see of the Frick were built with conversion to a gallery/museum in mind; you don't get to see the living areas that Frick used. At the Morgan Library, you do get to see the areas that were used by Morgan.

Canada
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7. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Thanks CockleCove for the great tip! And to everyone else with help on this topic. I am thinking the Frick Collection, but the Morgan has a cafe for lunch which might be appreciated on a cold December day!! Guess we will just have to come back to NYC again!

New York City
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8. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Kate is mistaken. The areas that you see of the Frick were indeed the living areas. There was no other dining room than the one that you see, there was no other living room, there was no other library. If the Fricks had a large party in their drawing room like any other wealthy New York Couple, those guests would find themselves in the West Gallery or the Fragonard Room as you see them. I don't know where the Fricks were supposed to have sat down to dinner, or to have received a call from friends, if not in the rooms that are there in their house -- because they certainly would not have expected their friends to climb the stairs to the bedroom floor!

As for the Morgan Library, while Morgan built the original library building on 36th Street, his actual house (whcih stood on the corner of 36th and Madison) was totally demolished in 1928, and the Annex building was built there. The house on the corner of 37th and Madison that still stands did not belong to J.P. Morgan, but to his son -- and it is not open to the public, nor is it in the condition in which it was when it was a residence. In additino, the interior of the original library building (which now forms only a small part of the Library) has been altered.

If you want to see a plutocrat's mansion that is still loargely in the form it had when the plutocrat lived there, you will need to go to the Frick, and not the Morgan.

Edited: 03 September 2011, 20:30
New York City, New...
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9. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

And, if you have the time, there's this marvelous one:

www.neuegalerie.org/museum/about/building

Eugene, Oregon
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10. Re: Frick Collection or the Morgan Library?

Let me put a different perspective on your choice for you.

I visited the Frick in the summer, and it was wonderful to just walk across the street to Central Park after.

And I visited the Morgan Library in the winter, and it was wonderful to just walk down the street after and look at the Macy's Christmas windows, and have a cozy lunch at Keen's.

That is, of course, if you weren't swayed by any of the special exhibits listed above. That's usually how I choose which museum I want to go to, and in this case I love what's on offer at the Frick, but really could care less about what's at the Morgan Library for your time period.