Take a Virtual Tour
This multiyear project restored the exterior of one of the finest examples of Neoclassical architecture in the United States and the historic heart of the Morgan. It also enhanced the surrounding grounds, improved the exterior lighting of the building, and increased public access to and appreciation of this historic architectural treasure. The Morgan Garden opened to the public on June 18, 2022 for its inaugural season.
Visitors to the Morgan can seasonally view the exterior of J. Pierpont Morgan's Library and enjoy the Garden through general admission. Details on how to visit the Garden can be found here.
In June 2022 the Morgan completed the first comprehensive exterior restoration of the library that J. Pierpont Morgan commissioned from architect Charles Follen McKim. This American Renaissance masterpiece, completed in 1906, is the historic heart of the Morgan Library & Museum. The restoration addressed weathering, deterioration, and minor cracking of architectural and decorative elements; stone soiling; losses in the thin masonry joints; deterioration of metalwork; and vulnerabilities in the roof and drainage system.
In conjunction with the restoration, the Morgan is undertook site enhancements to reinvigorate the southern portion of its campus and provide visitor access to the grounds for the first time in the institution’s history. Developed by award-winning landscape designer Todd Longstaffe-Gowan, the garden created an accessible route from the Morgan’s interior to the 36th Street site and a new, inviting space for tours and programs.
The garden’s design includes the introduction of periwinkle beds flanking the Library’s loggia and colorful, low-height herbaceous beds. A generous grass lawn sweeps out from the modern pavilion next to the Library, bordering the latter and the Annex. Bluestone pathways are laid in patterns derived from the Library’s Renaissance-inspired floors, and cobbled stonework adds visual and textural interest. The garden also displays several antiquities from the Morgan’s collection that have previously been inaccessible to the public.
New lighting enhances the building’s presence at night. Linnaea Tillett Lighting Design Associates developed a scheme that includes the relighting of the historic lantern in the Library’s loggia. Tillett’s design bathes the Library and garden in soft “moonlight” and highlights distinctive features of the building and landscape.
These photos provide an inside look into the many contractors working on the project.