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The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art announced Wednesday that it will reopen May 14, 2016, after being closed for three years of expansion. When it does, it will have seven floors of exhibition space, and one of those floors, the fourth, is larger than all five floors from the original building designed by Mario Bottathat opened 20 years ago.

“This is a game changer for San Francisco,” said SFMOMA Director Neal Benezra. “It lifts us to the top ranks for museums of modern and contemporary art in the world.”

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The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) announced that in 2016, it will unveil its John and Lisa Pritzker Center for Photography. It will be the largest exhibition space for photography in the United States. The museum is in the midst of a considerable expansion, which is being helmed by Snøhetta, a firm with headquarters in Norway and New York. The $365 million project will double the size of the museum.

The Pritzker Center for Photography is being funded by a lead gift from philanthropists and photography collectors, John and Lisa Pritzker, as well as generous donations from four additional benefactors. The nearly 15,500-square-foot center will just about triple the current amount of space for photography at SFMOMA. In addition to increased exhibition space, the center will feature an upgraded photographic study center and an interpretive space that will be the first of its kind in the country.

SFMOMA’s photography holdings currently number some 17,000 objects -- its largest collection in any medium. The collection includes works by Edward Weston, Alfred Stieglitz, Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange, Man Ray, William Eggleston, Lee Friedlander, and the finest holdings of Japanese photography outside Japan. SFMOMA’s photography collection will live on-site, divided between two state-of-the-art storage vault.

The museum’s director, Neal Benezra, said, ““The new center, together with the gifts to our collection, represent a transformative development for our photography program and for the entire museum. We are extremely grateful to our trustee Lisa Pritzker and her husband, John, and to our other supporters, whose vision and generosity will make SFMOMA a global destination for anyone with an interest in photography.”

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After leaving the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art’s (MOCA) board last year, California-based artist Ed Ruscha will join the San Francisco Museum of Art’s (SFMOMA) board. SFMOMA announced on Thursday, August 15, 2013 that Ruscha will take the one spot on its board reserved for an artist. He will serve on the board for a three-year term.

Ruscha has a profound relationship with SFMOMA and the museum is one of the few institutions in the world to have a complete collection of his seminal artist books, which he began making in the 1960s. SFMOMA also hosted Ruscha’s first retrospective in 1982. SFMOMA’s director, Neal Benezra, said, “Given his long history with SFMOMA and his exceptional knowledge and great influence in the art world, [Ruscha’s] input will be invaluable as we dramatically expand to become an international showcase for the best in contemporary culture.”

SFMOMA is in the midst of a $160-million renovation and expansion. Its central building is closed until at least early 2016.

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