“Velázquez Portraits: Truth in Painting” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Through March 12): In 2015 Philippe de Montebello was named chairman of the board of New York’s Hispanic Society. Now, that jewelbox institution at 155th Street and Broadway has begun to sparkle as never before. “Velázquez Portraits: Truth in Painting,” a micro-exhibition on view in Gallery 610 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art through March 12, 2017, is the product of the latest felicitous arrangement under de Montebello’s aegis. “Velázquez Portraits” pairs the Met’s iconic holdings, including Juan de Pareja (1650), with loans that include two Society gems—Portrait of a Young Girl (ca. 1640) and Cardinal Camillo Astalli-Pamphili (ca. 1650–51)—newly restored by the Metropolitan’s conservation department. The cleaning has been revelatory, restoring life to these aged works and confirming Young Girl as among Velázquez’s most moving portraits. (Compare the unrestored painting at the very top to the one just below in this post). The exhibition should serve as reminder to visit the free museum of the Hispanic Society before it closes at the end of December for a multi-year renovation while its masterpieces return to Spain, many for the first time in generations, for a groundbreaking exhibition at the Prado in spring 2017.