Today--Sunday, October 10, 2010--is your last chance for a year to visit the Weisman Art Museum. At 5 p.m., we'll close our doors until fall 2011 as part of our major expansion project.
The expansion has been part of WAM's long-term plan since the building opened in 1993. Legendary architect Frank Gehry has returned to complete his original vision for the Weisman with these new gallery spaces.
It'll be worth the wait. The Weisman's five new galleries will allow us to share more than three times as many objects from our permanent collection at any given time. One new gallery will be filled with highlights from our noted ceramics collection (master potter Warren MacKenzie will help us select the work); two will house masterworks of American modernism; and another will showcase our considerable collection of photography, prints, and drawings. The fifth new gallery, the Target Studio for Creative Collaboration, will house experimental collaborations between artists and students, faculty, and the community.
Check out some recent media stories on our expansion here, here, and here.
If you haven't been to WAM recently, here's how the construction site looks these days:
People have asked us what we'll be doing during this year that we're closed. We'll be using off-site locations to bring you great programming like the WAM Art Mob, which visits artists' studios, tours private collections, and goes to galleries to learn about collecting art in a casual atmosphere. If you haven't been part of Art Mob before, this would be a perfect year to join. Read more here.
We'll also be taking the Weisman on the road. Through a new education program called WAM to Go, we'll bring the richness of WAM's vast collection to schools, libraries, and community centers. Trained museum instructors will lead interactive workshops that feature images of objects from the museum. Workshops are designed to be active, guided, thematic discussions rooted in the participants' experiences, with critical looking and thinking about selected images from the Weisman's diverse collection. Interested in hosting a WAM to Go workshop? Email our education department.
Also this year, we'll be reinventing and reimagining everything we do at WAM--we'll bring new interpretive techologies into the galleries, redesign our website, create new visitor experiences, re-engineer our membership program, and imagine new ways to collaborate with our audiences. You'll recognize us when we reopen, but you'll also say, "Wow--you've changed!"
So, stick around. Stick with us. Join the Art Mob. Host a WAM to Go workshop. If you haven't already, sign up for our e-newsletter, where we'll give regular updates throughout the year on our transformation. While our precise opening date has yet to be set, expect the party of the year in fall 2011.
As Gehry himself famously said, "You've got to bumble forward into the unknown."
Here we go.