The women were injured “in the back, in the collarbone, in the back of the neck” but are both “going to be ok,” said John Miller, New York police department deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism.
The suspect, who had not been arrested as of late Saturday afternoon, was known to police as a regular visitor to MoMA, whose membership card had been expired after “two incidents involving disorderly conduct” in recent days, Miller said.
The two were rushed to the hospital following the attack, which occurred around 4:15 pm (2115 GMT).
Officers put up a police cordon, and the museum remained closed for Saturday.
Multiple news outlets, as well as social media posts, showed images of people standing outside the museum, a popular tourist destination, after being evacuated.
MoMA includes artwork by artists such as Vincent Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol and Frida Kahlo, to name a few.