Thursday, May 17, 2012

How to Open a New Old Museum

In 1923, during an exhibition of his art collection that would become the Barnes Foundation in Merion, Pennsylvania, two years later, Dr. Albert C. Barnes told an interviewer, “I am trying to do the biggest thing for Philadelphia that any one man has attempted.” Nearly nine decades later, the grand reopening of the Barnes Foundation in its new location on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia is attempting something even bigger—the opening of a new old museum that will make both the fans of the old place and fans of the new place both happy. With a beautiful new $150 million USD building and campus surrounding Dr. Barnes’ priceless old collection, it’s hard for anyone to complain. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "How to Open a New Old Museum."

[Image: View of the Barnes Foundation looking south east at night. The Barnes Foundation Philadelphia. © 2012 Tom Crane.]
[Many thanks to the Barnes Foundation for providing the image above and other press materials as well as for inviting me to the press preview.]


Hels said...

The Barnes collection was brilliant at the time, and rescued some of my favourite artists from penury. The problem was that Barnes wanted every single thing to be left in EXACTLY the spot where he placed it back in 1930 (or whenever he made the decisions).

But history moves on and I will be interested in seeing how the new site handles the display questions.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful picture! I think after all the controversy has settled, people will realize that this new building had all the best intentions -- to preserve the ART and not a dead man's wish. Artworks are living documents.

hope you'll visit me:)

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