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Dazzling Displays

The opening of the Gallery Met group show Imaginary Portraits: Prince Igor

The artistry at the Metropolitan Opera isn’t limited to the auditorium. For the past decade, the opera house has also been home to Gallery Met, an in-house exhibition space for new work by contemporary artists. Overseen by the super-connected Dodie Kazanjian, an editor covering art for Vogue, the gallery in recent years has presented exhibitions featuring the starry likes of Francesco Clemente, Chuck Close, George Condo, John Currin, Peter Doig, Rachel Feinstein, Alex Katz, William Kentridge, Anselm Kiefer, Ragnar Kjartansson, Guillermo Kuitca, Julie Mehretu, Wangechi Mutu, Elizabeth Peyton, Richard Prince, James Rosenquist, David Salle, Julian Schnabel, Laurie Simmons, and Dana Schutz, among other art-world titans. The idea is to revitalize the Met’s longstanding connection to the visual arts, building on historic collaborations with Marc Chagall, David Hockney, and others. Exhibitions are tied to Met productions, such as Genieve Figgis’s recent show of acrylics inspired by Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette and Peter Saul’s series of vibrant paintings connected to Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro. “Gallery Met is dedicated to the idea that contemporary art and opera are fully compatible,” Kazanjian says. “Bringing them together—in new ways and old—is a continuing adventure.” In the 2017–18 season, Gallery Met, located in the Met lobby, will present, among other things, new work by Swiss artist Nicolas Party on the occasion of the U.S. premiere of Thomas Adès’s The Exterminating Angel.

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