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Rogues' Gallery: The Secret Story of the Lust, Lies, Greed, and Betrayals That Made the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Condition: BRAND NEW
ISBN: 9780767924894
Author(s): Michael Gross
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Broadway Books
Dimensions: 122 x 225 x 32 (w x l x h)
Pages: 576

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Description:
"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 an
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