The BMA recently embarked on a $24.5 million three-year phased capital renovation slated for completion in 2014, the Museum’s 100th anniversary. The renovations will bring significant improvements for visitors, including the enhancements of galleries housing three major art collections—Contemporary, American, and African; improvements to the East Lobby; and upgrades to visitor amenities. Much needed improvements for essential infrastructure, including two new roofs and a state-of-the-art building automation system, will improve care for the 90,000 works of art in the BMA’s world-class collection.
"This unprecedented physical transformation is vital to the BMA’s future," said BMA Director Doreen Bolger. "We want to ensure the Museum is relevant to future generations of museum goers and an even greater cultural magnet for the region."
Watch a quick overview of the BMA’s renovation project with this video: World Renowned, Welcoming All, Inspiring the Minds
The Museum will remain open during the renovation and will continue to offer free admission to ensure its service to the community. The project will also benefit Marylanders by creating jobs in construction and related industries during the 2011-2014 renovation.
Significant public funds as well as private donations are making this opportunity possible. The project will be funded in part by a $10 million multi-year commitment from the State of Maryland, as well as $2.45 million in bond support from the City of Baltimore. Contributions to In a New Light: The Campaign for The Baltimore Museum of Art will fund the match for the renovations.
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The BMA unveiled the re-envisioned Contemporary Wing on November 18, 2012. Fourteen refreshed and revitalized galleries showcase masterworks from the collection by Andy Warhol and Robert Rauschenberg alongside more than a dozen new works by established and emerging artists working today. More than 100 objects—including paintings, sculpture, photographs, drawings, and moving image works—presented thematically in galleries improved with state-of-the art lighting and new wall and floor finishes. Highlights of the project include:
• The return of the acclaimed Front Room series, presenting a range of solo artist shows and thematic exhibitions with an international and multidisciplinary perspective
• Two new interactive galleries for visitors to connect to today's innovative art and artists
• The BMA’s first mobile art guide with video and audio commentary by curators, artists, and Baltimore personalities
• A new black box gallery for light, sound, and moving image works
• A dedicated gallery for light-sensitive contemporary prints, drawings, and photographs
A comprehensive collection of American art considered one of the finest on the East Coast is housed in the Museum’s historic John Russell Pope building and includes paintings, sculpture, works on paper, and decorative arts from the colonial era to the present. Nine galleries on the 2nd floor of the Dorothy McIlvain Scott American Wing will be renovated to maximize this beautiful setting for approximately 200 masterworks of American fine and decorative arts. Highlights of this project include:
• A showcase for works by the celebrated master of glass Louis Comfort Tiffany, one of America’s most renowned designers
• A gallery dedicated to the great works created by Maryland artists in the BMA’s collection
One of the earliest and most important collections of African art in the U.S. features more than 2,000 objects that span from ancient Egypt to contemporary Zimbabwe, as well as several objects from west and central Africa identified as the best of their kind. Highlights of the project include:
• Organizing the collection thematically rather than geographically so that visitors can more readily see cross-cultural connections
• Displaying African masks, textiles, and other objects in ways that better convey their original scale and context