Free, But At What Price?

Should MoMA’s Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden be open to the public free of charge? (It’s now the price of museum admission: $25.) That’s the question New York’s Museum of Modern Art is mulling over, to the dismay of some and approval of others.

Landscape architect Michael R. Van Valkenburgh says what makes the garden great is its “cloistered isolation.” And yet another landscape architect, Ken Smith, says, “It probably would bring in people to the museum who might not otherwise come into the museum.”

You should read the entire New York Times article because there are many interesting points of view and factors in the charged debate.

According to the article, since September the museum has been experimenting with making the garden free for one hour and 15 minutes before MoMA’s 10:30am opening time. And it’s actually considering making its entire ground floor free to the public.

In the end, MoMA’s director Glenn D. Lowry explains that it’s about working through all of the variables and striking a balance. But admittedly, it’s a tough place to be — between a rock and a Matisse sculpture.

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