Renwick Gallery Reopening Announced, 11/13/2015

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Summary

America's oldest art museum will reopen on November 13, 2015, after a comprehensive two year renovation. The building, originally built in 1859 as the Corcoran Museum, has not been renovated in 45 years. Once known as the "American Louvre," the gallery is particularly significant because it was first erected in order to "encourage American genius," which it continues to do today. The opening exhibit titled "Wonder" features installations by nine contemporary artists. Opening weekend festivities include public programs and special publications. The renovated museum boasts restoration of original building features, with the addition of efficient LED lighting throughout, a new "Octagon Room," and an elaborate carpet lining the grand staircase. The $30 million renovation, both publicly and privately funded, comes some 45 years after the building was saved from demolition by First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy. The building was offered to the Smithsonian in 1965, and opened as a branch of the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) in 1972.

Subject

  • Onassis, Jacqueline Kennedy 1929-1994
  • Renwick Gallery
  • Corcoran Gallery of Art
  • Smithsonian American Art Museum

Category

Chronology of Smithsonian History

Notes

  • National Historic Landmark Building will reopen on November 13, 2015
  • Newsdesk-Press Room of the Smithsonian Institution

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu

Date

04/21/2015

Topic

  • Museum buildings
  • Energy consumption
  • Art
  • Architecture
  • Art museums
  • Historic preservation
  • Conservation and renovation
  • Museums
  • Museum architecture
  • History
  • Artists
  • Building--Conservation and renovation
  • Art--History
  • Museum exhibits
  • Energy conservation

Place

Washington (D.C.)

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