Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is an art museum in Kansas City, known for its neoclassical architecture and extensive collection of Asian art. In 2007, Time magazine ranked the museum's new Bloch Building number one on its list of "The 10 Best Architectural Marvels" which considered candidates from around the globe. On September 1, 2010, Julián Zugazagoitia became the fifth Director of the museum; the museum was built on the grounds of Oak Hall, the home of Kansas City Star publisher William Rockhill Nelson. When he died in 1915, his will provided that upon the deaths of his wife and daughter, the proceeds of his entire estate would go to purchasing artwork for public enjoyment; this bequest was augmented by additional funds from the estates of Nelson's daughter, son-in-law and attorney. In 1911, former schoolteacher Mary McAfee Atkins, widow of real estate speculator James Burris Atkins, bequeathed $300,000 to establish an art museum. Through sound management of the estate, this amount grew to $700,000 by 1927.
Original plans called for two art museums based on the separate bequests. However, trustees of the two estates decided to combine the two bequests along with smaller bequests from others to make a single major art institution; the building was designed by prominent Kansas City architects Wight and Wight, who designed the approaches to the Liberty Memorial and the Kansas governor's mansion, Cedar Crest. Ground was broken in July 1930, the museum opened December 11, 1933; the building's classical Beaux-Arts architecture style was modeled on the Cleveland Museum of Art Thomas Wight, the brother who did most of the design work for the building said: We are building the museum on classic principles because they have been proved by the centuries. A distinctly American principle appropriate for such a building may be developed, but, so far, everything of that kind is experimental. One doesn't experiment with two-and-a-half million dollars; when the original building opened its final cost was $2.75 million.
The dimensions of the six-story structure were 390 feet long by 175 feet wide, making it larger than the Cleveland Museum of Art. The museum, locally referred to as the Nelson Art Gallery or the Nelson Gallery, was two museums until 1983 when it was formally named the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art; the east wing was called the Atkins Museum of Fine Arts, while the west wing and lobby was called the William Rockhill Nelson Gallery of Art. On the exterior of the building Charles Keck created 23 limestone panels depicting the march of civilization from east to west including wagon trains heading west from Westport Landing. Grillwork in the doors depict oak leaf motifs in memory of Oak Hall; the south facade of the museum is an iconic structure in Kansas City that looms over a series of terraces onto Brush Creek. About the same time as the construction of the museum, Howard Vanderslice donated 8 acres to the west of the museum, across Oak Street, for the Kansas City Art Institute, which moved from the Deardorf Building at 11th and Main streets in downtown Kansas City.
As William Nelson, the major contributor, donated money rather than a personal art collection, the curators were able to assemble a collection from scratch. At the height of the Great Depression, the worldwide art market was flooded with pieces for sale, but there were few buyers; as such, the museum's buyers found a vast market open to them. The acquisitions grew and within a short time, the Nelson-Atkins had one of the largest art collections in the country. One of the original components of the building was a recreation of Nelson's oak paneled room from Oak Hall; the room bookcases. The room was dismantled in 1988 to make way for a photography studio. One-third of the building on the first and second floors of the west wing were left unfinished when the building opened to allow for future expansion. Part was completed in 1941 to house Chinese painting and the remainder of the building was completed after World War II. In 1993 Michael Churchman wrote a history of The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, High Ideals and Aspirations.
The museum had four Directors before Julián Zugazagoitia’s appointment in 2010. A native of Massachusetts, Gardner graduated from MIT in 1917 with a degree in architecture, he served with distinction in WWI, after which he traveled in North Africa for a year. In about 1919 he became a ballet dancer with Anna Pavlova's Ballet Company, dancing under the name “Paul Tchernikoff”. Gardner went back to graduate school, earning a master's in European history from George Washington University in 1928 and enrolling in the doctoral program in art history at Harvard. In March of 1932 the cautious Trustees of the Nelson Art Gallery, who were hesitant about naming a full-fledged Director, appointed the graduate student as their assistant on a trial basis. Gardner took to the new position at once, so was named by the Trustees as Director eighteen months on September 1, 1933, he would serve for the next twenty years. Ethylene Jackson, Paul Gardner’s executive secretary since 1933, became acting director in November 1942 when Gardner was commissioned a major in the United States Army.
Besides her role as executive secretary to the Director, Jackson had served as curator of the decorative arts collection. Paul Gardner served as a Monuments Man in Europe, returning to the Nelson in December 1945. Ethylene Jackson left Kansas City for New York City the following year after marrying art dealer Germain Seligman. Upon Paul Gardner's retirement
See Amenemhat, for other individuals with this name. Amenemhat III spelled Amenemhet III, was a pharaoh of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt, he ruled from c. 1860 BC to c. 1814 BC, the highest known date being found in a papyrus dated to Regnal Year 46, I Akhet 22 of his rule. His reign is regarded as the golden age of the Middle Kingdom, he may have had a long coregency with his father, Senusret III. Toward the end of his reign he instituted a coregency with his successor Amenemhet IV, as recorded in a now damaged rock inscription at Konosso in Nubia, which equates Year 1 of Amenemhet IV to either Year 46, 47, or 48 of his reign, his daughter, Sobekneferu succeeded Amenemhat IV, as the last ruler of the twelfth dynasty. Amenemhat III's throne name, means "Belonging to the Justice of Re." He built his first pyramid at Dahshur. Around Year 15 of his reign the king decided to build a new pyramid at Hawara, near the Faiyum; the pyramid at Dahshur was used as burial ground for several royal women. The mortuary temple attached to the Hawara pyramid may have been known to Herodotus and Diodorus Siculus as the "Labyrinth".
Strabo praised it as a wonder of the world. The king's pyramid at Hawara contained some of the most complex security features of any found in Egypt; the king's burial was robbed in antiquity. His daughter or sister, was buried in a separate pyramid 2 km southwest of the king's; the pyramidion of Amenemhet III's pyramid tomb was found toppled from the peak of its structure and preserved intact. There is little evidence for military expeditions in the reign of the king. There is one record for a small mission in year nine of the king; the evidence for, found in a rock inscription in Nubia, near the fortress of Kumma. The short text reports that a military mission was guided by the mouth of Nekhen Zamonth who reports that he went north with a small troop and that nobody died when going back south. Many expeditions to mining areas are recorded under the king. There are two expeditions known to the Wadi el-Hudi at the southern border of Egypt, where Amethyst was collected. One of the enterprises dates to year 11, of the king.
Two further to year 20 and to year 28. There were further mining expeditions to the Wadi Hammamat; these are dated to year 3, 19, 20 and 33 of the king's reign. The inscriptions of year 19 and 20 might be related to the building start of the pyramid complex at Hawara, they report the breaking of stone for statues. At the Red Sea coast, at Mersa was discovered a stela mentioning an expedition to Punt under Amenemhat III; the highest official involved in the expedition was the high steward Senebef. Other people in charge were the chamberlain Nebesu. During his long rule Amenemhat continued the work started by his father to link the Fayum Depression with the Nile; the area had been a mere swamp previously. A canal 16 kilometres long and 1.5 kilometres wide was dug. The banks for the central deep side were at a slope of 1:10, to allow use of non-cohesive soil and rock fill. A dam called Ha-Uar ran east-west and the canal was inclined towards the Fayum depression at the slope of 0.01 degrees. The resultant Lake Moeris could store 13 billion cubic meters of flood water each year.
This immense work of civil engineering was finished by his son Amenemhat IV and brought prosperity to Fayum. The area became a breadbasket for the country and continued to be used until 230 BC when the Lahun branch of the Nile silted up; the vizier Kheti held this office around year 29 of king Amenemhat III's reign. The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus is thought to have been composed during Amenemhat's time; the monuments of Amenemhat III are numerous and of excellent quality. They include a small but well decorated temple at Medinet Madi in the Faiyum, which he and his father dedicated to the harvest goddess Renenutet. Amenemhat III is, together with Senusret III, the best-attested Middle Kingdom king by number of statues. About 80 statues or fragments of statues can be assigned to him; the sculpture of Amenemhat III continued the tradition of Senusret III. Many of his works no longer represent a young idealized king, but instead an expressive physiognomy, showing signs of age. There is an amazingly wide range of stones used for the sculpture of the king, not attested for any king before.
Furthermore, the king introduced several new types of sculptures, many of these types inspired by older prototypes, dating back to the early Dynastic Period. There are two facial types that can be assigned to Amenemhat III. Realistic style: The face of the king shows its bone structure, furrows are marked in the face; the face features are evidently inspired by those of the sculpture of Senusret III idealized style: The king is shown as young man, with a triangular face. Ammenemes Lamares, Ameres Moeris W. Grajetzki, The Middle Kingdom of Ancient Egypt: History and Society, London 2006 ISBN 0-7156-3435-6, 58-61 Amenemhat Nimaatre The Pyramid of Amenemhet III from Talking Pyramids
Crete is the largest and most populous of the Greek islands, the 88th largest island in the world and the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, after Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica. Crete and a number of surrounding islands and islets constitute the region of Crete, one of the 13 top-level administrative units of Greece; the capital and the largest city is Heraklion. As of 2011, the region had a population of 623,065. Crete forms a significant part of the economy and cultural heritage of Greece, while retaining its own local cultural traits, it was once the centre of the Minoan civilisation, the earliest known civilisation in Europe. The palace of Knossos lies in Crete; the island is first referred to as Kaptara in texts from the Syrian city of Mari dating from the 18th century BC, repeated in Neo-Assyrian records and the Bible. It was known in ancient Egyptian as Keftiu suggesting a similar Minoan name for the island; the current name of Crete is thought to be first attested in Mycenaean Greek texts written in Linear B, through the words ke-re-te, ke-re-si-jo, "Cretan".
In Ancient Greek, the name Crete first appears in Homer's Odyssey. Its etymology is unknown. One proposal derives it from a hypothetical Luwian word, *kursatta. In Latin, it became Creta; the original Arabic name of Crete was Iqrīṭiš, but after the Emirate of Crete's establishment of its new capital at ربض الخندق Rabḍ al-Ḫandaq, both the city and the island became known as Χάνδαξ or Χάνδακας, which gave Latin and Venetian Candia, from which were derived French Candie and English Candy or Candia. Under Ottoman rule, in Ottoman Turkish, Crete was called Girit. Crete is the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, it is located in the southern part of the Aegean Sea separating the Aegean from the Libyan Sea. The island has an elongated shape: it spans 260 km from east to west, is 60 km at its widest point, narrows to as little as 12 km. Crete covers an area of 8,336 km2, with a coastline of 1,046 km, it lies 160 km south of the Greek mainland. Crete is mountainous, its character is defined by a high mountain range crossing from west to east, formed by three different groups of mountains: The White Mountains or Lefka Ori 2,454 m The Idi Range (Psiloritis 35.18°N 24.82°E / 35.18.
The island has a number of gorges, such as the Samariá Gorge, Imbros Gorge, Kourtaliotiko Gorge, Ha Gorge, Platania Gorge, the Gorge of the Dead and Richtis Gorge and waterfall at Exo Mouliana in Sitia. The rivers of Crete include the Ieropotamos River, the Koiliaris, the Anapodiaris, the Almiros, the Giofyros, Megas Potamos. There are only two freshwater lakes in Crete: Lake Kournas and Lake Agia, which are both in Chania regional unit. Lake Voulismeni at the coast, at Aghios Nikolaos, was a freshwater lake but is now connected to the sea, in Lasithi. Lakes that were created by dams exist in Crete. There are three: the lake of Aposelemis Dam, the lake of Potamos Dam, the lake of Mpramiana Dam. A large number of islands and rocks hug the coast of Crete. Many are visited by tourists, some are only visited by biologists; some are environmentally protected. A small sample of the islands includes: Gramvousa the pirate island opposite the Balo lagoon Elafonisi, which commemorates a shipwreck and an Ottoman massacre Chrysi island, which hosts the largest natural Lebanon cedar forest in Europe Paximadia island where the god Apollo and the goddess Artemis were born The Venetian fort and leper colony at Spinalonga opposite the beach and shallow waters of Elounda Dionysades islands which are in an environmentally protected region together the Palm Beach Forest of Vai in the municipality of Sitia, LasithiOff the south coast, the island of Gavdos is located 26 nautical miles south of Hora Sfakion and is the southernmost point of Europe.
Crete straddles two climatic zones, the Mediterranean and the North African falling within the former. As such, the climate in Crete is Mediterranean; the atmosphere can be quite humid, depending on the proximity to the sea, while winter is mild. Snowfall is rare in the low-lying areas. While some mountain tops are snow-capped for most of the year, near the coast snow only stays on the ground for a few minutes or hours. However, a exceptional cold snap swept the island in February 2004, during which period the whole island was blanketed with snow. During the Cretan summer, average temperatures reach the high 20s-low 30s Celsius, with maxima touching the upper 30s-mid 40s; the south coast, including the Mesara Pla
18th century BC
The 18th century BC was the century which lasted from 1800 BC to 1701 BC. 1800 BC: Iron age in India 1800 BC: Beginning of the Nordic Bronze Age in the period system devised by Oscar Montelius. C. 1800 BC: Sedentary Mayan communities in Mesoamerica c. 1800 BC: Hyksos start to settle in the Nile Delta. They had the capital at Avaris in northeastern Nile Delta. 1800 BC Adichanallur urn-burial site in Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu. In 2004, a number of skeletons dating from around 3,800 years ago. 1800 BC Indo-Aryan migration 1800 BC – 1700 BC: Decline of the Indus Valley Civilization 1800 BC – 1300 BC: Troy VI flourishes. C. 1792 BC – 1750 BC: – Hammurabi rules Babylonia and has to deal with Mari, which he conquers late in his career. C. 1792 BC – 1750 BC: – Stela of Hammurabi, from Susa is made. It is now in Paris. 1787 BC – 1784 BC: Amorite conquests of Uruk and Isin. 1786 BC: Egypt: Queen Sobekneferu dies. End of Twelfth Dynasty, start of Thirteenth Dynasty, start of Fourteenth Dynasty. 1779 BC: Zimrilim, the King of Mari, starts to rule.
1770 BC: Babylon, capital of Babylonia becomes the largest city of the world, taking the lead from Thebes, capital of Egypt. 1766 BC: Shang conquest of Xia Dynasty. China. 1764 BC – 1750 BC: Wars of Hammurabi. 1757 BC: Mari sacked by Hammurabi. Zimrilim's palace is destroyed. 1757 BC: Zimrilim, the King of Mari, dies. 1750 BC: Hyksos occupation of Northern Egypt. 1750 BC: A colossal volcanic eruption at Mount Veniaminof, Alaska. C. 1750 BC: Vedic period starts in India. C. 1750 BC: Investiture of Zimrilim, facsimile of a wall painting on mud plaster from the Zimrilim palace at Mari, Court 106, is made. It is now in Paris. C. 1740–1720 BC: reigns of pharaoh Neferhotep I and his brother Sobekhotep IV, marking the apex of the Egyptian 13th Dynasty. 1749 BC – 1712 BC: Mesopotamian Rebellions. Early Unetice culture, beginning of the Bronze Age in Central Europe. Minoan civilization: phase II of the Middle period. C. 1700 BC: The last species of mammoth became extinct on Wrangel Island. C. 1700 BC: Indus Valley Civilization comes to an end but is continued by the Cemetery H culture c. 1700 BC: Minoan Old Palace period ends and Minoan Second Palace period starts in Crete.
C. 1700 BC: Aegean metalworkers are producing decorative objects rivaling those of Ancient Near East jewelers, whose techniques they seem to borrow. C. 1700 BC: Lila-Ir-Tash started to rule the Elamite Empire. C. 1700 BC: Bronze Age starts in China. C. 1700 BC: Shang Dynasty starts in China. Hammurabi, ruler of the Babylonian Empire Tang of Shang overthrew emperor Jie, last ruler of the Xia Kingdom. 1750 BC—Hammurabi c. 1700 BC—Median date for the building of the Phaistos Disc. Its purpose and meaning, its original geographical place of manufacture remains unknown, making it one of the most famous mysteries of archaeology
19th century BC
The 19th century BC was the century which lasted from 1900 BC to 1801 BC. 1900 BC: Transition from Early Helladic III to Middle Helladic culture in Greece. C. 1900 BC: Minoan Old Palace period starts in Crete. C. 1900 BC: Fall of last Sumerian dynasty. C. 1900 BC: Late Harappan Phase of the Indus Valley Civilization begins c. 1900 BC: The Mokaya along the Pacific coast of present-day Chiapas, Mexico were preparing cacao beverages. C. 1900 BC: Port of Lothal is abandoned. Hittite empire in Hattusa, Anatolia. C. 1897 BC: Senwosret II started to rule. He built Kahun near his pyramide tomb complex at el-Lahun. C. 1895 BC–1878 BC: "Pectoral of Senwosret II", from the tomb of princess Sithathoryunet at el-Lahun was made. Twelfth Dynasty, it is now in the Metropolitan Museum of New York. C. 1880 BC: Pharaoh Senwosret II starts to rule. 1878 BC: Senwosret II died. C. 1878 BC: Senwosret III started to rule. 1876 BC: Israelites enter Egypt after two years of famine. C. 1874 BC: Pharaoh Senwosret II dies. C. 1874 BC: Pharaoh Senwosret III starts to rule.
C. 1860 BC: Senusret III inspects the Nubian frontier, he leads four punitive campaigns against the Nubians. C. 1860 BC: Amenemhat III starts to rule c. 1855 BC: Pharaoh Senwosret III dies. C. 1839 BC: Senwosret III died. 1836 BC-1818 BC: Head of Senusret III is made. Twelfth dynasty of Egypt, it is now kept at The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Kansas City, Missouri. 1807 BC–1797 BC—Amenemhat III of Egypt 1806 BC-1802 BC—Sobekneferu of Egypt
Missouri is a state in the Midwestern United States. With over six million residents, it is the 18th-most populous state of the Union; the largest urban areas are St. Louis, Kansas City and Columbia; the state is the 21st-most extensive in area. In the South are the Ozarks, a forested highland, providing timber and recreation; the Missouri River, after which the state is named, flows through the center of the state into the Mississippi River, which makes up Missouri's eastern border. Humans have inhabited the land now known as Missouri for at least 12,000 years; the Mississippian culture built mounds, before declining in the 14th century. When European explorers arrived in the 17th century they encountered the Osage and Missouria nations; the French established Louisiana, a part of New France, founded Ste. Genevieve in 1735 and St. Louis in 1764. After a brief period of Spanish rule, the United States acquired the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. Americans from the Upland South, including enslaved African Americans, rushed into the new Missouri Territory.
Missouri was admitted as a slave state as part of the Missouri Compromise. Many from Virginia and Tennessee settled in the Boonslick area of Mid-Missouri. Soon after, heavy German immigration formed the Missouri Rhineland. Missouri played a central role in the westward expansion of the United States, as memorialized by the Gateway Arch; the Pony Express, Oregon Trail, Santa Fe Trail, California Trail all began in Missouri. As a border state, Missouri's role in the American Civil War was complex and there were many conflicts within. After the war, both Greater St. Louis and the Kansas City metropolitan area became centers of industrialization and business. Today, the state is divided into the independent city of St. Louis. Missouri's culture blends elements from Southern United States; the musical styles of ragtime, Kansas City jazz, St. Louis Blues developed in Missouri; the well-known Kansas City-style barbecue, lesser-known St. Louis-style barbecue, can be found across the state and beyond. Missouri is a major center of beer brewing.
Missouri wine is produced in Ozarks. Missouri's alcohol laws are among the most permissive in the United States. Outside of the state's major cities, popular tourist destinations include the Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Branson. Well-known Missourians include U. S. President Harry S. Truman, Mark Twain, Walt Disney, Chuck Berry, Nelly; some of the largest companies based in the state include Cerner, Express Scripts, Emerson Electric, Edward Jones, H&R Block, Wells Fargo Advisors, O'Reilly Auto Parts. Missouri has been called the "Mother of the West" and the "Cave State"; the state is named for the Missouri River, named after the indigenous Missouri Indians, a Siouan-language tribe. It is said that they were called the ouemessourita, meaning "those who have dugout canoes", by the Miami-Illinois language speakers; this appears to be folk etymology—the Illinois spoke an Algonquian language and the closest approximation that can be made in that of their close neighbors, the Ojibwe, is "You Ought to Go Downriver & Visit Those People."
This would be an odd occurrence, as the French who first explored and attempted to settle the Mississippi River got their translations during that time accurate giving things French names that were exact translations of the native tongue. Assuming Missouri were deriving from the Siouan language, it would translate as "It connects to the side of it," in reference to the river itself; this is not likely either, as this would be coming out as "Maya Sunni" Most though, the name Missouri comes from Chiwere, a Siouan language spoken by people who resided in the modern day states of Wisconsin, South Dakota, Missouri & Nebraska. The name "Missouri" has several different pronunciations among its present-day natives, the two most common being and. Further pronunciations exist in Missouri or elsewhere in the United States, involving the realization of the first syllable as either or. Any combination of these phonetic realizations may be observed coming from speakers of American English; the linguistic history was treated definitively by Donald M. Lance, who acknowledged that the question is sociologically complex, but that no pronunciation could be declared "correct", nor could any be defined as native or outsider, rural or urban, southern or northern, educated or otherwise.
Politicians employ multiple pronunciations during a single speech, to appeal to a greater number of listeners. Informal respellings of the state's name, such as "Missour-ee" or "Missour-uh", are used informally to phonetically distinguish pronunciations. There is no official state nickname. However, Missouri's unofficial nickname is the "Show Me State"; this phrase has several origins. One is popularly ascribed to a speech by Congressman Willard Vandiver in 1899, who declared that "I come from a state that raises corn and cotton and Democrats, frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I'm from Missouri, you have got to show me." This is in keeping with the saying "I'm from Missouri" which means "I'm skeptical of the matter and not convinced." However, according to researchers, the phrase "show me" was in use
Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art of New York City, colloquially "the Met", is the largest art museum in the United States. With 6,953,927 visitors to its three locations in 2018, it was the third most visited art museum in the world, its permanent collection contains over two million works, divided among seventeen curatorial departments. The main building, on the eastern edge of Central Park along Museum Mile in Manhattan's Upper East Side is by area one of the world's largest art galleries. A much smaller second location, The Cloisters at Fort Tryon Park in Upper Manhattan, contains an extensive collection of art and artifacts from Medieval Europe. On March 18, 2016, the museum opened the Met Breuer museum at Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side; the permanent collection consists of works of art from classical antiquity and ancient Egypt and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, an extensive collection of American and modern art. The Met maintains extensive holdings of African, Oceanian and Islamic art.
The museum is home to encyclopedic collections of musical instruments and accessories, as well as antique weapons and armor from around the world. Several notable interiors, ranging from 1st-century Rome through modern American design, are installed in its galleries; the Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in 1870 for the purposes of opening a museum to bring art and art education to the American people. It opened on February 20, 1872, was located at 681 Fifth Avenue; the Met's permanent collection is curated by seventeen separate departments, each with a specialized staff of curators and scholars, as well as six dedicated conservation departments and a Department of Scientific Research. The permanent collection includes works of art from classical antiquity and ancient Egypt and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, an extensive collection of American and modern art; the Met maintains extensive holdings of African, Oceanian and Islamic art. The museum is home to encyclopedic collections of musical instruments and accessories, antique weapons and armor from around the world.
A great number of period rooms, ranging from 1st-century Rome through modern American design, are permanently installed in the Met's galleries. In addition to its permanent exhibitions, the Met organizes and hosts large traveling shows throughout the year; the current chairman of the board, Daniel Brodsky, was elected in 2011 and became chairman three years after director Philippe de Montebello retired at the end of 2008. On March 1, 2017, the BBC reported that Daniel Weiss, the Met's president and COO, would temporarily act as CEO for the museum. Following the departure of Thomas P. Campbell as the Met's director and CEO on June 30, 2017, the search for a new director of the museum was assigned to the human resources firm Phillips Oppenheim to present a new candidate for the position "by the end of the fiscal year in June" of 2018; the next director will report to Weiss as the current president of the museum. In April 2018, Max Hollein was named director. Beginning in the late 19th century, the Met started acquiring ancient art and artifacts from the Near East.
From a few cuneiform tablets and seals, the Met's collection of Near Eastern art has grown to more than 7,000 pieces. Representing a history of the region beginning in the Neolithic Period and encompassing the fall of the Sasanian Empire and the end of Late Antiquity, the collection includes works from the Sumerian, Sasanian, Assyrian and Elamite cultures, as well as an extensive collection of unique Bronze Age objects; the highlights of the collection include a set of monumental stone lamassu, or guardian figures, from the Northwest Palace of the Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II. Though the Met first acquired a group of Peruvian antiquities in 1882, the museum did not begin a concerted effort to collect works from Africa and the Americas until 1969, when American businessman and philanthropist Nelson A. Rockefeller donated his more than 3,000-piece collection to the museum. Today, the Met's collection contains more than 11,000 pieces from sub-Saharan Africa, the Pacific Islands, the Americas and is housed in the 40,000-square-foot Rockefeller Wing on the south end of the museum.
The collection ranges from 40,000-year-old indigenous Australian rock paintings, to a group of 15-foot-tall memorial poles carved by the Asmat people of New Guinea, to a priceless collection of ceremonial and personal objects from the Nigerian Court of Benin donated by Klaus Perls. The range of materials represented in the Africa and Americas collection is undoubtedly the widest of any department at the Met, including everything from precious metals to porcupine quills; the Met's Asian department holds a collection of Asian art, of more than 35,000 pieces, arguably the most comprehensive in the US. The collection dates back to the founding of the museum: many of the philanthropists who made the earliest gifts to the museum included Asian art in their collections. Today, an entire wing of the museum is dedicated to the Asian collection, spans 4,000 years of Asian art; every Asian civilization is represented in the Met's Asian department, the pieces on display include every type of decorative art, from painting and printmaking to sculpture and metalworking.
The department is well known for its comprehensive collection of Chinese calligraphy and painting, as well as for its Indian sculptures and Tibetan works, the arts of Burma and Thailand. All three ancient religions of India – Hinduism and Jainism – are well represented in these s