Art: Show and Tell

Over the past five years, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, one of the half-dozen greatest cultural institutions in the U.S., has had its share of troubles. Some came from outside: money was short and the cost of everything from ink pads to Guercinos had shot up, threatening the museum's power to collect or even administer itself on its old scale. Other problems were internal. There was friction between the scholarly and populist interests within the Met. A troublesome gap existed between the trustees and the curatorial staff. To those outside its doors, the...

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