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Displaying items by tag: Expansion

The American Folk Art Museum announced that it will open an annex for its collection and library in Long Island City, Queens, near the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center. The 17,000-square-foot facility, which is expected to open early next year, will provide the museum with extra space for storage and exhibitions.

In 2001, the Folk Art Museum opened its monumental Tod Williams and Billie Tsien-designed building on West 53rd Street in Manhattan. The museum soon fell into financial turmoil and  in 2011, was forced to sell the building to the Museum of Modern Art and move to a smaller location in Lincoln Square. The Museum of Modern Art has since decided to raze the Folk Art Museum’s former home to make way for an upcoming expansion.

Founded in 1961, the American Folk Art Museum is devoted to traditional folk art and contemporary self-taught artists. Its collection includes over 5,000 objects from the 18th century to the present.   

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On Monday, April 14, workers began placing scaffolding and protective netting around the former home of the American Folk Art Museum on West 53rd Street in New York City. Last week, the Museum of Modern Art, which acquired the Tod Williams and Billie Tsien-designed building in 2011 after the Folk Art Museum defaulted on more than $30 million in bond debt, filed plans with the city’s Department of Buildings for a partial demolition. MoMA made the controversial decision to raze the building last April.

Before demolition can begin, the Folk Art Museum’s striking bronze facade must be disassembled and stored. MoMA has made no further decisions about what will happen to the facade beyond its preservation. Demolition of the remaining structure is expected to last through the summer.    

The former Folk Art Museum will be leveled to create space for MoMA's upcoming expansion. The project is being helmed by the architecture firm Diller Scofidio + Renfro and will include a renovation of the museum’s main building. The new site will join MoMA’s existing galleries with a forthcoming 82-story residential tower, which will include exhibition space for the museum.

Published in News
Tuesday, 15 April 2014 14:15

Picasso Museum Postpones Reopening

The Musée Picasso in Paris has postponed its reopening after announcing in February that it would open to the public in June. The museum has been closed for nearly five years for a renovation and expansion. Since the museum is under the stewardship of the French government, the Culture Ministry is responsible for determining an official reopening date.

The Musée Picasso, which holds one of the most comprehensive collections of Pablo Picasso’s work, initially closed for a two-year refurbishment, but once underway, the scope of the project expanded. Except for a few minor technical details, the renovation, which cost around $71 million, is complete.

Prior to the renovation, the Musée Picasso could only display a fraction of its 5,000 paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, and documents. The project nearly doubled the institution’s exhibition space, allowing the museum to display more of its illustrious collection. The museum will also be able to accommodate more guests than ever before and annual admission figures are expected to rise from 450,000 to 850,000.

The museum, which is located in a 17th-century Baroque mansion in Paris’ historic Marais quarter, first opened to the public in 1985. Most of its collection was left to the French state upon Picasso’s death in 1973. A number of works were also donated by the artist’s family, including his widow Jacqueline.

The Musée Picasso plans to reopen to the public by the end of the year.

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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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The Delaware Art Museum in Wilmington announced on Wednesday that it had decided to sell up to four works from its collection, to save the museum from closing. The institution found itself in grave bond debt following an expansion and renovation in 2005. The museum did not specify which works it plans to sell, but said that it expected to bring in $30 million from the sale, which is enough to pay off the institution’s $19.8 million bond debt and renew its endowment.

The Delaware Art Museum’s Chief Executive Officer, Mike Miller, released an official statement saying, “After detailed analysis, heavy scrutiny and the exhaustion of every reasonable alternative to relieve our bond debt, the Trustees had two agonizing choices in front of them — to either sell works of art, or to close our doors. While today’s decision is certainly hard to bear, the closure of this 100-year-old museum would be, by comparison, unbearable.”

Miller went on to explain that repayment terms for tax-exempt bonds issues in 2003 for the expansion of the institution’s historic Kentmere Park building became accelerated due to restrictive banking regulations, causing the museum to default on performance covenants. At the same time, the museum’s endowment dwindled as a result of stock market performance, forcing the Trustees to make significant budget cuts, including staff layoffs and funding cuts for exhibitions.

The Delaware Art Museum, which focuses on American art of the 19th through the 21st centuries and English Pre-Raphaelite art of the mid-19th century, expects the sale to be finalized in the next six months.

Published in News
Wednesday, 12 March 2014 12:32

Harvard’s Art Museums to Reopen in November

On November 16, 2014, the Harvard Art Museums -- including the Busch-Reisinger Museum, the Arthur M. Sackler Museum, and the Fogg Museum of Art -- will reopen to the public under one state-of-the art roof. The project, which began in 2008, has entailed a complete renovation and expansion of Harvard’s museum system. The endeavor has increased gallery space by 40 percent, for a total of approximately 43,000 square feet.

Harvard tapped renowned architect Renzo Piano to transform 32 Quincy Street in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the landmark building that previously housed the Fogg and Busch-Reisinger Museum, into the university’s artistic hub. The new facility combines the 32 Quincy Street building, which was constructed in 1927, with a new addition and a striking glass rooftop structure that will allow controlled natural light into the facility’s conservation lab, study centers, and galleries. The overhaul also includes a theater for lectures and public programming.

The Busch-Reisinger Museum, which was founded in 1903, is the only museum in North America dedicated to the art of the German-speaking countries of Central and Northern Europe. The Fogg Art Museum, which opened to the public in 1896, boasts extensive holdings of American and European art from the Middle Ages to the present. The Arthur M. Sackler Museum, which holds a remarkable Asian art collection, was established in 1985 in a separate building from the Fogg and Busch-Reisinger. The museum has been closed since June to prepare for its relocation to the new facility.  

Thomas W. Lentz, the Elizabeth and John Moors Cabot Director of the Harvard Art Museums, said, “We knew that we had an opportunity to redefine the Harvard Art Museums as an accessible and connected 21st-century facility for teaching and learning, so we engaged Renzo Piano to design a building to implement that vision. We asked him to design it from the inside out—to create a new kind of laboratory for the fine arts that would support our mission of teaching across disciplines, conducting research, and training museum professionals. We also wanted to strengthen the museums’ role as an integral part of Cambridge and Boston’s cultural ecosystem. We look forward to welcoming students, faculty, and staff at Harvard, our Cambridge friends and neighbors, the entire Greater Boston community, and travelers from afar into our new home this November.”

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Malcolm Rogers, the Ann and Graham Gund Director of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA), announced to the museum’s board of trustees that he will retire as soon as a successor is hired to fill the position. Rogers has been with the MFA for nearly 20 years and spearheaded the museum’s various expansions and renovations and oversaw a number of acclaimed exhibitions. Rogers said, “My 20 years have been such an invigorating time at the MFA, as we worked to reinforce the Museum’s position as a vital community resource and transform it into a global destination for arts and culture. I would like to thank the Museum’s Board of Trustees, staff, members and volunteers, as well as the millions of people from Boston and around the world who consider the MFA a special part of their lives and have visited during my two decades here.”

Since his appointment in 1994, Rogers has grown the MFA’s comprehensive collection, enhanced arts education programs, and beautified the museum’s campus. In 2008, Rogers reopened the MFA’s historic Fenway entrance, which had been closed for nearly 30 years. In 2010, the new Art of the Americas Wing opened at the museum -- a milestone achievement for Rogers, the MFA and Boston. Rogers spearheaded a campaign that raised $504 million, of which $345 million funded new galleries and conservation labs. In 2011, a wing of the museum was renovated and reopened as the Linde Family Wing for Contemporary Art, which features 10 new galleries, classrooms, and a variety of public spaces. Currently, gallery renovations are underway in the MFA’s George D. and Margo Behrakis Wing for Art of the Ancient World. Works acquired during Rogers’ tenure include Edgar Degas' “Duchessa di Montejasi with Her Daughters, Elena and Camilla,” Piet Mondrian’s “Composition with Blue, Yellow, and Red,” and Ellsworth Kelly’s “Blue Green Yellow Orange Red.”

The MFA will celebrate Rogers’ 20th anniversary this fall with a series of events including lectures, community programs, and a gala, which will be held on September 6.

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In the midst of its considerable expansion project, the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky has been working with conservators to assess the condition of its collection and to oversee any necessary repairs. As part of this effort, the museum sent Paul Klee's "Seven Blossoms," an abstract watercolor and ink drawing on paper, to Nashville-based conservator, Christine Young, in hopes of halting discoloration to the already darkened work. Young was tasked with removing the acidic core of the paperboard that the drawing was mounted on, which was causing the discoloration. After carefully removing "Seven Blossoms" from its mount, Young discovered a previously unknown second drawing by Klee on the reverse.

Kim Spence, Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs at the Speed Art Museum said, "Any discovery of a new work by an artist of Klee’s significance is exciting, but this discovery is particularly significant for the Speed. It expands our representation of the artist and illustrates different facets of his artistic production."

The drawing, which depicts a town or village with geometric buildings set against a faint landscape, will go on view at the museum's satellite space, Local Speed, on February 28, 2014. The work will be displayed in a double-sided frame so that both Klee compositions will be visible.

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Friday, 14 February 2014 15:03

The Frick will Loan Major Works to Dutch Museum

Next year, the Frick Collection in New York will loan a significant group of paintings, sculptures and decorative objects to the Mauritshuis in The Hague. It will be the first time that the Frick has lent such a substantial portion of its collection to a fellow institution. The Frick recently welcomed a number of masterpieces from the Mauritshuis, including Johannes Vermeer’s ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring,’ that were presented in the exhibition ‘Masterpieces of Dutch Painting from the Mauritshuis,’ which attracted record crowds.

‘A Country House in New York: Highlights From the Frick Collection’ will present works acquired by the museum after founder Henry Clay Frick’s death in 1919. In his will, Frick stated that none of the artworks that he acquired, which make up about two-thirds of the Frick Collection, can be lent to another institution. The exhibition will include works by Jan van Eyck, Thomas Gainsborough, John Constable and Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres. ‘A Country House in New York’ will remain on view through May 10, 2015.

On June 27, 2014, the Mauritshuis will reopen following a two-year renovation and expansion.

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Thursday, 13 February 2014 13:37

MoMA to Save Former Folk Art Museum’s Facade

Earlier this year, New York’s Museum of Modern Art announced that it would move forward with an expansion project that involved razing the former home of the American Folk Art Museum. The Tod Williams and Billie Tsien-designed building was acquired by MoMA in 2011 after the Folk Art Museum defaulted on more than $30 million in bond debt. The building sits adjacent to MoMA and earned praise for its bold design when it opened in 2001.

Glenn D. Lowry, MoMA’s director, announced that although the former Folk Art Museum will be demolished, the building’s striking bronze facade will be disassembled and stored. The museum has made no further decisions about what will happen with the facade beyond its preservation. Darcy Miro, the artist who collaborated with Williams and Tsien to design the facade, suggested erecting the bronze panels as a freestanding sculpture at Storm King Art Center, an open-air museum in Mountainville, New York.

MoMA’s expansion is being helmed by the New York-based design studio, Diller Scofidio + Renfro.   

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