4. The Entranceway Ceiling is Made to Resemble Leather

When you first walk into the museum, before you get to the magnificent Guastavino rotunda, there is an equally stunning vaulted ceiling in the entranceway. This ceiling was created using fourteen layers of specialized paint. The result of these thick layers is a finished product that looks and feels like embossed leather. The complexity of the painted ceiling was realized when preparations were being made for repairs. Workers discovered just how unique the composition of the paint was.

Another secret about the entranceway: the chandeliers are made of wood! Copper and brass would have made the fixtures too heavy, so they are painted to mimic the look of metal.