POUGHKEEPSIE, NY -- The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College's museum designed by Cesar Pelli and opened in 1993, will close for roof repairs after May 18, 2010, with a re-opening expected in January 2011.
The repairs will affect the Main Galleries of the Art Center, where the museum regularly exhibits portions of its renowned permanent collection, including works by such masters as Frederic Church, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O'Keeffe, and Jackson Pollock. The Art Center will remove all art works from the Main Galleries, as well as reschedule two planned special exhibitions.
Vassar students and faculty will be provided some access to works in the Art Center's permanent collection, strictly for course-related purposes; however no public attendance at the museum will be possible until the repairs are complete and the museum is fully reopened in January 2011 for the second semester. During this hiatus, the Art Center plans to move popular public programs such as the weekly Thursday "Late Night at the Lehman Loeb" series to other campus locations.
"We certainly regret this disruption in the Art Center's service to Vassar and the public. But once these important repairs are completed we'll have an exciting reopening, and unveil the first total reconfiguration and reinstallation of the permanent collection since the Art Center opened," said James Mundy, the Anne Hendricks Bass Director, who has headed the museum from the outset in 1993. "One of the unexpected benefits of this closure period will be the opportunity to look with fresh eyes at our exhibition space."
Among its expanding education and outreach activities, the Art Center will continue to offer the Every Artwork Tells A Story (EATS) program, a unique learning opportunity that brings the museum experience to area K-12 classrooms. Now in its sixth year, EATS provides student-centered discussions about art works from the Art Center's permanent collection, and the program has already served thousands of Dutchess and Ulster county students.
Vassar 150 Years Later: New Photographs by Tina Barney, Tim Davis, and Katherine Newbegin will be the first exhibition of 2011, on view from January 28 – March 27, 2011. As part of a campus-wide celebration of Vassar’s sesquicentennial anniversary, The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center has commissioned three photographers to create new work highlighting different aspects of campus life. The resulting photographs by Tina Barney, Tim Davis, and Katherine Newbegin will focus on the people, environment, and culture of Vassar today. This new commission will follow a strong photographic legacy that dates back to the early part of the 20th century. Throughout the history of the college photographers have been invited to campus to capture the architecture, people, and lifestyle. Two fine historical examples are Paul Strand who photographed several Vassar buildings in 1915 and Albert Eisenstadt who illustrated campus life for the February 1937 issue of LIFE magazine. Several of the original photographs from these earlier commissions are in the permanent collection and will be presented in a nearby gallery to compliment the new work by Barney, Davis, and Newbegin.
The Art Center's repairs will affect the scheduling of two planned exhibits, which are now postponed indefinitely: Color Outside the Lines: Abstract Expressionist Works on Paper (previously scheduled for April 9-June 13, 2010) and Marco Maggi: Lentissimo (previously scheduled for June 25-August 8, 2010).
About the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center
The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center was founded in 1864 as the Vassar College Art Gallery. The current 36,400-square-foot facility, designed by Cesar Pelli and named in honor of the new building's primary donor, opened in 1993. The Art Center's collections chart the history of art from antiquity to the present and comprise over 18,000 works, including paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photographs, and glass and ceramic wares. Notable holdings include the Warburg Collection of Old Master prints, an important group of Hudson River School paintings given by Matthew Vassar at the college's inception, and a wide range of works by major European and American 20th- century painters. Vassar was the first U.S. college founded with a permanent art collection and gallery, and at any given time, the Permanent Collection Galleries of the Art Center feature approximately 350 works from Vassar's extensive collections.
Admission to the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center is free. The art center is open to the public Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, 10:00am–5:00pm; Thursday, 10:00am–9:00pm; and Sunday, 1:00–5:00 pm. Located at the entrance to the historic Vassar College campus, the Art Center can be reached within minutes from other Mid-Hudson cultural attractions, such as Dia:Beacon, the Franklin Roosevelt and Eleanor Roosevelt national historic sites and homes, and the Vanderbilt mansion. The Art Center is wheelchair accessible. For more information, the public may call (845) 437-5632 or visit fllac.vassar.edu.
Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential liberal arts college founded in 1861.