Crocker Art Museum Expansion to Open in October

On October 10, 2010 the Crocker Art Museum—the first art museum established in the Western United States—will unveil a new 125,000-square-foot building designed by Gwathmey Siegel & Associates Architects that will more than triple the museum’s current size.

The new building will complement the museum’s historic structures and expand the Crocker Art Museum’s ability to originate and present traveling exhibitions and educational programs, exhibit significantly more of its growing collection, and enhance its role as a cultural resource for California and the state’s many visitors. The project’s capital campaign has elicited unprecedented support, with more than $92 million raised to date towards a $100 million goal.

The Crocker Art Museum, which became a public institution in 1885, will mark its 125th anniversary in 2010. The museum’s holdings and programs have burgeoned as the population of Sacramento—the State Capital—has increased and diversified. Today, the museum houses contemporary paintings, sculpture, and multi-media works, a comprehensive collection of California art dating from the Gold Rush to the present day, exceptional holdings of master drawings, Dutch and Flemish paintings from the 16th and 17th centuries, 19th-century Central and Northern European paintings, one of the largest and most comprehensive international ceramics collections in the United States, and a rapidly growing collection of Asian art. The Crocker continues to build its programs and strengthen its collection in new and existing areas in anticipation of the increased capacities its new building will provide.

“The new Crocker Art Museum will be a point of pride for our city and our state,” said Marcy Friedman, Campaign Co-Chair and Board Member, Crocker Art Museum Association. “Sacramento is not only the Capital of California, it is in the midst of some of our state’s greatest destinations —from Napa Valley and the Bay Area to Lake Tahoe and Yosemite—and the Crocker Art Museum is at the heart of Sacramento. I have long believed that Sacramento and the Crocker would emerge and flourish as cultural leaders, and I am deeply proud to have been able to play a role in making that vision a reality.The tremendous support for this project shows a strong commitment to the value of the arts by both the city and the people of Sacramento.”

“The opening of our new facility next October marks a dynamic phase in the evolution of the Crocker” said Museum Director Lial Jones. “We will be able to exhibit works that have rarely–or never– been on public view and significantly expand our educational programming and public events. All of us at the Crocker are very excited to serve our community in ways that literally weren’t possible before and to be an even more integral part of civic life in Sacramento and the region.”

“This is an exhilarating time for the city of Sacramento, and the Crocker Art Museum’s expansion exemplifies the changes taking place here,” said Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson. “The museum is vital to the region’s cultural and economic development, and the new Crocker is an important icon for Sacramento’s ongoing emergence as a cultural destination and a world-class city.”

Image: Interior rendering of the Crocker Art Museum’s expansion

crockerartmuseum.org.

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