Time to Celebrate: The Library Reopens

November 5, 2010

The refurbished J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library was celebrated with a series of events, including a black-tie gala, a cocktail reception for the Morgan's Fellows and Young Fellows, an evening reserved for members to preview the building, and a public opening on October 30 with concerts and a lecture by William M. Griswold, director of the Morgan.

The New York Times exclaimed that the restoration "really does inspire oohing and aahing. It looks terrific." Time Out New York listed the opening day as one of the principal activities of a "perfect weekend" in the city.

To watch a time-lapse video of the transformation of Pierpont Morgan's library (the East Room) click here. This video—produced over the course of six weeks—captures the phase of the refurbishment after the electrical work was completed. The carpet is installed, the cases arrive and are assembled by a team of craftsmen, old plexiglas is replaced with new sheets of non-reflective Tru Vue, the lighting is installed and positioned, art works are placed in cases, books are returned to shelves, and cosmetic touches are made to ready the room for the reopening.

There is even more to look forward to in J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library this fall. As part of the Morgan's holiday program, Charles Dickens's original manuscript of A Christmas Carol, and a first edition of the story will be on view in the library as of November 30. I hope you will join us in celebrating the new J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library during this holiday season!

See Pierpont Morgan's 1906 Library exhibition page »

William M. Griswold (right), former director of The Morgan Library & Museum, and S. Parker Gilbert, President of the Board of Trustees, gave remarks at the benefit event for the reopening of J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library. The event was held the Monday before the building reopened to the public.

Guests at the benefit event examine the life mask of George Washington, now on display in the Rotunda.

Guests taking a look at the newly restored West Room (Pierpont Morgan's Study).

A guest reads a printed copy of the Declaration of Independence, now on view in the Rotunda.

Event guests discuss the Gutenberg Bible, now back in its original place in the East Room (The Original Library).

Guests take in all of the dramatic changes in the North Room, which has been transformed into a gallery and is accessible to the public for the first time.

J. Pierpont Morgan’s Library reopened to the public on Saturday, October 30 to much fanfare. Musicians from Mannes College The New School for Music were on hand to provide entertainment.

Visitors in the East Room take a look at some of the Morgan's most valued objects from its medieval holdings.

A close-up of one of the newly designed, internally illuminated display cases in the East Room.

Visitors in the North Room. The North Room once served as the office of the Morgan's first director, Belle da Costa Greene.

Some of the oldest works in the Morgan's collections are on view in the North Room, including objects from the ancient Near East, Egypt, Greece, and Rome, as well as artifacts from the early medieval period. Here, visitors, examine ancient Near Eastern seals, which are among the earliest known pictorial carvings used to communicate ideas.