NEW YORK.- Lisa Phillips, Toby Devan Lewis Director, and Saul Dennison, President of the Board of Trustees, announced today that the New Museum, one of the nations leading showcases for the art of our time, will open its much-anticipated new building on the Bowery to the public on Saturday, December 1, 2007. Coinciding with the institutions 30th anniversary, the milestone will be celebrated with 30 hours of continuous free admission to the public sponsored by Target, beginning at noon on December 1st. New York City officials will preside over a grand ribbon cutting ceremony at the New Museum on Friday, November 30th.
With the inauguration of the building at 235 Bowery, between Stanton and Rivington Streets at the head of Prince Street, the New Museum of Contemporary Art will occupy its own freestanding, dedicated building for the first time in the institutions history and will be the first art museum ever built from the ground up in downtown Manhattan. The seven-story, 60,000 square foot structure a glimmering metal mesh-clad stack of boxes shifted off axis in a dynamic composition was designed by noted avant garde architects Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa of the Tokyo-based partnership Sejima + Nishizawa/SANAA. The new New Museum building has been named for trustees Mitzi Eisenberg and Susan Feinstein and their husbands Warren Eisenberg and Leonard Feinstein, who together provided the lead gift to the institutions now nearly completed $64 million capital campaign.
The New Museum building on the Bowery will have the presence of a gravity defying sculpture sited at a pivotal geographic and cultural intersection in New Yorks urban fabric, along the storied thoroughfare where several of the citys most distinctive communities meet and generations of artists have lived, worked, and contributed to the ongoing cultural dialogue of the nation. Clad in a silvery, anodized expanded aluminum mesh and punctuated by windows and skylights that offer vistas and vignettes of the city, the buildings form was conceived to express the ever-changing dynamic of the art and ideas to be presented within. Dramatic full floor, column-free exhibition spaces will occupy three main gallery levels. The building will also house a 180-seat theater, classrooms, an education center, and a top-floor events space with rooftop terraces offering panoramic views of the city. The broad, light-washed ground floor space named the Marcia Tucker Hall in honor of the New Museums late founder will be an animated public space where visitors will find the Museums acclaimed store, a sleek café, and a glass walled lobby gallery lit by daylight from a setback above. These features and spaces will provide a platform for the Museums far-reaching international programs, including exhibitions, installations, live presentations and performances, public education programs, and a highly original new global institutional partnership initiative, Museum as Hub.
Director Lisa Phillips said, It is fitting that we will celebrate our 30th anniversary of presenting new art and new ideas with the inauguration of a building that is commensurate with both the New Museums program and the ambitions of the many artists we showcase. Sejima and Nishizawa have conceived an ideal home for the New Museum of Contemporary Art a place that will encourage dialogue and creativity, catalyze community interaction, and spark a constant exchange of insights and information. They have truly given form to our passionate commitment to the importance of art to everyday life. On the Bowery, the New Museum will continue our exploration of new art and new ideas with the same energy, openness to experimentation, fearlessness, and pure excitement that brought us to this remarkable milestone in the institutions history.