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New York, N.Y. - The Cloisters museum and gardens, The Metropolitan Museum of Art's northern Manhattan branch dedicated to the art and architecture of medieval Europe, will be open to the public on two Mondays this coming holiday season: December 26 and January 2. "Holiday Mondays at The Cloisters" represent an expansion of the Metropolitan Museum's popular "Met Holiday Mondays," which began in 2004. These Monday openings will provide an opportunity for the public to visit either or both of the Museum's two locations on the Mondays of long holiday weekends when, traditionally, the Museum has been closed. The Cloisters and the Metropolitan Museum's main building will both be open on December 26 and January 2. "We are very happy to open The Cloisters-in addition to the Met's main building-for two additional days during the busy holiday season," said Emily K. Rafferty, President of the Museum. "These extra viewing hours allow the public to take time from their busy schedules to enjoy the special atmosphere of the Museum, in whichever location they choose. Families, in particular, will enjoy seeing The Game of Kings: Medieval Ivory Chessmen from the Isle of Lewis-a group of 34 medieval chess pieces supplemented with additional works from the Met's permanent collection-on display at The Cloisters. The chessmen are a wonderful reminder of the important role that play has in all our lives. And The Cloisters provides a perfect setting for these charming medieval masterpieces." What to See on Met Holiday Mondays The upcoming Met Holiday Mondays will give visitors additional opportunities to see exhibitions, the collections, and holiday decorations and displays at both The Cloisters and the Museum's main building. In addition to the exhibition The Game of Kings, which will be on view through April 22, highlights of the Museum's renowned collection of medieval art will be on display at The Cloisters, including the famed Unicorn Tapestries, and hundreds of examples of exquisite stained glass, metalwork, enamels, ivories, and paintings, all in the magnificent architectural setting along the Hudson River that evokes the Middle Ages. The Great Hall at The Cloisters will be decorated for the holidays with wreaths and garlands hand-made from plants linked with the celebration of Christmastide in the Middle Ages, including ivy, apples, hazelnuts, and rosehips. The Cloisters museum and gardens is located at 99 Margaret Corbin Drive, Fort Tryon Park, in northern Manhattan. In the Metropolitan's main building, at 82nd Street and Fifth Avenue, visitors will enjoy a variety of exhibitions, including The Renaissance Portrait from Donatello to Bellini (on view through March 18), Stieglitz and His Artists: Matisse to O'Keeffe (through January 2), and Lisbon's Hebrew Bible: Medieval Jewish Art in Context (through January 16). For the holiday season, the Museum's annual Christmas tree and Neapolitan Baroque crèche-a brightly lit, 20-foot blue spruce decorated with 18th-century angels, cherubs, and a Nativity scene-will also be on display (through January 8). A complete listing of programs and activities to be held at both the Metropolitan Museum's main building and The Cloisters during the holiday season this year-family programs, films, concerts, tours, holiday dining, shopping (in the Met's new Holiday shop), and more-can be found on the Metropolitan Museum's website at http://www.metmuseum.org/. Credits: The Game of Kings: Made possible by the Michel David-Weill Fund. The Renaissance Portrait: Made possible by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the Diane W. and James E. Burke Fund, the Gail and Parker Gilbert Fund, and The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation. Organized by Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Gemäldegalerie and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities. Stieglitz and His Artists: Made possible by the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Foundation. Lisbon's Hebrew Bible: Made possible by The David Berg Foundation. Christmas Tree and Neapolitan Baroque Crèche: Made possible by gifts to The Christmas Tree Fund and the Loretta Hines Howard Fund.