All the Beauty in the World: The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Me (Paperback)

All the Beauty in the World: The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Me By Patrick Bringley Cover Image
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A best book of the year from New York Public Library, NPR, the Financial Times, Book Riot, and The Sunday Times (London).

An “exquisite” (The Washington Post) “hauntingly beautiful” (Associated Press) portrait of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and its treasures by a former New Yorker staff who spent a decade as a museum guard.

Millions of people climb the grand marble staircase to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art every year. But only a select few have unrestricted access to every nook and cranny. They’re the guards who roam unobtrusively in dark blue suits, keeping a watchful eye on the two million square foot treasure house. Caught up in his glamourous fledgling career at The New Yorker, Patrick Bringley never thought that he’d be one of them. Then his older brother was diagnosed with fatal cancer and he found himself needing to escape the mundane clamor of daily life. So he quit The New Yorker and sought solace in the most beautiful place he knew.

To his surprise and your delight, this temporary refuge becomes Bringley’s home away from home for a decade. We follow him as he guards delicate treasures from Egypt to Rome, strolls the labyrinths beneath the galleries, wears out nine pairs of company shoes, and marvels at the beautiful works in his care. Bringley enters the museum as a ghost, silent and almost invisible, but soon finds his voice and his tribe: the artworks and their creators and the lively subculture of museum guards—a gorgeous mosaic of artists, musicians, blue-collar stalwarts, immigrants, cutups, and dreamers. As his bonds with his colleagues and the art grow, he comes to understand how fortunate he is to be walled off in this little world, and how much it resembles the best aspects of the larger world to which he gradually, gratefully returns.

In the tradition of classic workplace memoirs like Lab Girl and Working Stiff, All the Beauty in the World is an “empathic” (The New York Times Book Review), “moving” (NPR), “consoling, and beautiful” (The Guardian) portrait of a great museum, its hidden treasures, and the people who make it tick, by one of its most intimate observers.

About the Author

Patrick Bringley worked for ten years as a guard in the galleries of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Prior to that, he worked in the editorial events office at The New Yorker. He lives with his wife and children in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. All the Beauty in the World is his first book.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781982163310
ISBN-10: 1982163313
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: October 29th, 2024
Pages: 240
Language: English