FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 23, 2008
MAYOR BLOOMBERG, SPEAKER QUINN AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS COMMISSIONER LEVIN CUT RIBBON ON MUSEUM OF ARTS AND DESIGN AT COLUMBUS CIRCLE
New Home Doubles Exhibition Space and Allows for Creation of New Artist Residency Program
City Provided $11.3 Million to Enhance Public Access to Collections and Support Museum as a Link between the Midtown Manhattan and Upper West Side Cultural Corridors
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, First Deputy Mayor Patricia E. Harris, City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn, Commissioner of Cultural Affairs Kate D. Levin and Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) Director Holly Hotchner today cut the ribbon on the museum's new home at Two Columbus Circle. The six-year, $90 million renovation project, made possible with $11.3 million from the City, doubles the museum's exhibition space and allows for the creation of a new artist residency program. The museum, set to open to the public this Saturday, September 27th, includes 14,000 square feet of gallery space, a 155-seat theater, new education facilities and artist workspace visible to the public. Originally built in 1964, the Museum of Arts and Design's new home is poised to draw 500,000 visitors annually. The Mayor was joined at the announcement at Two Columbus Circle by Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, Council Members Gale A. Brewer, Daniel R. Garodnick, Jessica Lappin and Domenick M. Recchia, Jr., Assembly Members Richard N. Gottfried and Linda B. Rosenthal, and State Senator Thomas K. Duane.
"Today, we celebrate the long-anticipated completion of this extraordinary
new home for the Museum of Arts and Design, and in so doing we are also
inaugurating New York City's newest cultural hub - Columbus Circle," said Mayor
Bloomberg. "The Museum's new home at Two Columbus Circle will be a destination
for audiences from around the corner and around the world, linking the midtown,
Upper West Side and Clinton cultural corridors. Congratulations to Holly
Hotchner and the Museum's board, who have helped build a public-private
partnership that will generate new audiences for the Museum, and maintain the
City's reputation as a cultural capital."
"The Museum of Arts and Design is helping to redefine what belongs in a
museum, giving craftsmanship, materials and process a preeminent role," said
Commissioner Levin. "This renovation lets the Museum expand its commitment to
the public - and the new artist studios in particular will help break down
barriers between artists and audiences."
"This is great day for the Museum," said Museum Chairman Jerome A. Chazen. "We are grateful to the City and particularly to the Mayor and his entire Administration, including of course Speaker Quinn and the City Council, Borough President Stringer and Commissioner Kate Levin and the Department of Cultural Affairs, for championing this project and fostering the arts as vehicle for economic development."
Since the project's inception in 2002, the Museum's board of directors has raised more than $90 million from the City and private funders for the renovation project. In 2002, The New York City Economic Development Corporation negotiated the sale of Two Columbus Circle to the Museum. The Museum of Arts and Design is a nonprofit organization that receives support through the Department of Cultural Affairs Cultural Development Fund for public and school programs.
"This is an excellent new use for a prominent building with a history as a home for the arts," said EDC President Seth W. Pinsky. "It will add another exciting cultural dimension to the Columbus Circle/Lincoln Center area, draw additional visitors and spur even greater economic activity."
"This is a joyous moment for the City of New York," said Borough President Stringer. "What could be better than a museum named MAD? I am so proud to be part of this wonderful day and of what we have accomplished together."
Working in collaboration with architect Brad Cloepfil of Allied Works Architecture, the Museum of Arts and Design's new 54,000-square-foot building incorporates the Museum into the social and cultural fabric of the newly revived Columbus Circle and its surrounding neighborhoods. The new design illuminates the nearly windowless building and enlivens its 14,000 square feet of gallery space with natural light and views of the City. For the first time in its history, the Museum boasts a permanent home for its renowned collection of more than 2,000 objects. The design also includes a new façade that features textured terracotta panels and transparent fritted glass, materials that express the Museum's craft traditions.
The move from its former home at 53rd Street allows the Museum to expand its audience, and to engage visitors, students, families, and artists from New York City and abroad with dynamic programs and exhibitions. The Museum is committed to fostering public access to its collections through initiatives like Free Thursdays and the MADLab education program, which serves more than ten thousand NYC schoolchildren each year. The sixth floor will house new education spaces and three open artist-in-residence studios, making the Museum the first multi-disciplinary institution to offer arts education, hands-on art-making, and art making within a single museum experience.
The Museum's exhibitions feature materials and processes that are embraced by practitioners in the fields of craft, art and design, as well as architecture, fashion, interior design, technology, performing arts, and art and design-driven industries. The institution's new name, adopted in 2002, reflects this wider spectrum of interest, as well as the increasingly interdisciplinary nature of the Museum's permanent collection and exhibition programming.
The Museum of Art and Design now features the following spaces and visitor services:
New exhibits include:
Stu Loeser/Andrew Brent (212) 788-2958
Kate deRosset/Danai Pointer (Cultural Affairs) (212) 513-9322
Heidi Riegler (Museum of Arts and Design) (212) 299-7713
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