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Honorary degree citation to Philippe De Montebello (Doctor of Arts)
You have since 1978 directed the largest museum in the western hemisphere. Your own artistic interests have always been eclectic. You indeed have said, "I love almost everything ... Egyptian art, Greek things, drawings, paintings, and [I] loved going back and forth across civilizations." And we, sir, have been privileged to join in your travels. Under your leadership and guidance, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has expanded considerably, with new galleries for Chinese paintings and decorative arts, for European paintings and sculpture, and for so many other collections. Today, the museum is more than ever a national treasure - a world treasure - with over two million pieces of art, representing human culture over the past five millennia. Last year, the President of the United States recognized your contributions by awarding you the National Medal of Arts.
You have helped us all to understand that while museums have it as a fundamental role to display and conserve art, that role is not sufficient. You have taken seriously the responsibility to use collections to educate. Each year, you present over thirty special exhibitions at the Museum, and you have increased opportunities for children, students, scholars, and the general public to learn from and experience art. For your distinguished record in protecting and sharing the legacy of the best of human creativity, Dartmouth today is pleased to admit you to our fellowship, through the conferring of this degree, Doctor of Arts.
- James Wright
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