Boston, MA– The building housing MassArt’s Bakalar and Paine Galleries used to present some difficulties for art exhibits and installations, but Lisa Tung, Director and curator of the new MassArt Art Museum, says that will no longer be a problem. An elevator will be added, along with several other new amenities that are soon to come. Tung stated, “After the renovations we will have an elevator for the very first time.”
In the past, installing exhibitions used to involve a lot of backbreaking heavy lifting, and as Tung put it, “It was a lot of blood, sweat and tears.”
Fast forward to 2019, where the installation of an elevator for the museum is currently taking place. The renovations started in June 2017, with an approximate $12.5 million overhaul for a 15,000 square foot space. The public venue will open up again in February on Huntington Avenue, and it will house a brand new contemporary art museum run by the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. The 1906 structure that used to house the Bakalar and Paine Galleries will now create the MassArt Art Museum, abbreviated as MAAM.
In February 2020, the location will showcase a prominent entranceway along with an outdoor plaza, containing public art installations. Many art-related events will be held in the rooms of MAAM.
Contractors and museum officials working on the project have had their work cut out for them to ensure the new contemporary museum is perfect for its grand opening. For instance, crews working in the building chose to blow out a ceiling in the Paine Gallery to expose the original vaulted ceilings, reports WBUR.
Luckily, there will also be invisible improvements to the location that will house the brand new contemporary art museum. Climate and humidity systems are being added to the mix. In the past, hosting exhibitions throughout the summer was nearly impossible, due to delicate art and works on paper not being able to withstand the heat. Now, the temperature-controlled environment will be comfortable for both visitors and works of art to stand within the building.
MassArt has been closed now for 18 months due to renovation and construction.
The college states that the grand opening of the newest contemporary art museum in Boston will be in February 2020.
Image via Flickr / Soe Lin