Behind the Fig Leaf Met

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When a 500-year-old statue fell to the ground at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2002, the New York institution had no choice but to pick up the pieces and put Tullio Lombardo’s Adam back together. Thankfully the restoration is now complete, including Adam’s fig leaf. We’ve become used to seeing fig leaves covering the genitals of marble statues, but art historian Luke Syson will ask us to step back and think about what that leaf really means in a compelling lecture at the Met. Behind the Fig Leaf explores what happens when you draw attention to something by hiding it, as well as larger questions of how Renaissance sculptors incorporated narrative in their work. There’s more hiding behind that fig leaf than you might’ve imagined.

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