Monday, June 30, 2014

Live-Blogging the Met

Well, live-tweeting actually, since blogger's mobile interface is, shall we say, poor. But if you feel like it, around 2 pm Eastern time I will actually be physically in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, looking at things and making comments about them on twitter, as @daisyj. I promise to try to find more interesting than uninteresting things, and while I make no guarantees, I think there should be a few available.


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Blogging the Met: Mostly Jars

They have a lot of stuff at the Met[citation needed]. Pieces of rock that might have been part of something, pieces of rock that might have been used for something, sherds, etc. But, if you are going by the things they have collected that are not pieces of something else, a person might be forgiven for thinking the ancient world was made up almost entirely of jars.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Blogging the Met: Some Interesting and Uninteresting Things

One of the problems I have with major museums is the inevitable feeling that you missed almost everything. No matter how dedicated you are, even if you wear ugly shoes, you are guaranteed to end the day tired, foot-sore and blurry-brained from information overload, and you still will only have actually looked at about 0.003% of the collection. And that's just the stuff on display. This has always made me feel like a bit of a failure, and frankly, I get enough of that in my normal life. I don't think I need to add it to my vacations.*

Which is why I was so weirdly excited to learn that the Metropolitan Museum of Art (henceforth: the Met) had put their entire collection online (395,996 items, so far). I've decided to look at all of it, and an important part of that decision has been to not do the math and see if it is even remotely possible. I've decided to go chronologically.

The earliest period chronicled by the Met is 8000-2000 B.C., which seems like a lot until you realize it's mostly jars. I'll be posting here about my discoveries and questions, and whether I ever figure out the difference between a "shard" and a "sherd." (They have both.) But first I thought it would be fun to look at some of the most interesting things I've seen so far, as well as some of the least interesting, because that's just the kind of person I am.