Virtual Exhibitions from the Archives

Though the main event is in our gallery, the Museum preserves complete records of its past shows in an online version, not just through installation views, but displaying every image and label text! You can view more than 25 virtual exhibitions through this portal. Each one has a microsite with its own navigation menu that is archived on our original "legacy" website: you'll notice a change in format, but you will find a wealth of history!

TOP TEN LISTS hold a perennial fascination, and arguments about which building should hold the title of world's tallest has spawned three competing line-ups based on different metrics. In 2015, the Museum took a different tack – the exhibition TEN TOPS which created a simple category – buildings of 100 stories and higher – then focused on one aspect of their identity: the topmost floors. Distinctive tops that add extra height have been characteristic of New York skyscrapers from the first tall office buildings in the 1870s, and the romance of Manhattan's towers has been the inspiration and touchstone for a worldwide surge of signature tops.

In July 2018, our exhibition SKYLINE investigated the changing scene of New York City's many skylines over the years, attempting to simplify and organize New York’s nearly 150 years of skyline development into five significant periods in which buildings take characteristic forms shaped by economic, technological, and regulatory factors. Check out the SKYLINE virtual exhibition, including the sliders seen above, to learn more about New York's vertical history!

In addition to all the content hosted on the Museum website, we also have adapted original content to Urban Archive's platform. At the Museum's Collection page, you can find virtual historic tours of New York City buildings, using archive images and pairing them to maps of the city.