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The Week’s Muse: 20 September

20 September 2014

A round-up of recent news and comment from the Muse Room

The $65 million pavement

The Metropolitan Museum's new plaza opened on Tuesday 9 September.

The Metropolitan Museum’s new plaza opened on Tuesday 9 September. Author’s photograph

‘How $10 soared up to $65 million was skipped over with mutterings of bigger fountains, a hundred or so trees, new lighting and some umbrellas and seats. We all applauded “the great philanthropist David Koch”.’ Louise Nicholson reports from New York.

When is a house a museum?

The Wallace Collection, Hertford HouseHouse museums are as various and distinctive as their one-time inhabitants. What makes a good one, and what role do they play in the UK cultural sphere? Katy Barrett reflects on a two-day Museums and Galleries History Group conference at the revamped Wallace Collection.

Connoisseur computers

(1870), Frédéric BazilleScientists have developed an algorithm that identifies visual affinities between paintings. Apparently it has even spotted correlations that art historians have missed. Are we all out of a job? Rosalind McKever thinks we’re safe for now…

Image makers not image takers: photography today

(2014), Daniel GordonBernadine Bröcker paid a visit to the Unseen Photo Fair in Amsterdam this week. If its exhibits are anything to go by, today’s photographers have moved on from traditional snapshot to collages, constructions, and mixed media: photography is getting physical.