6 Exciting Additions To The New SFMOMA

1 May 2016

After about seven years of expansion and refurbishment the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will reopen to the public on 14 May, 2016.

The opening will signify a new home for art in San Francisco, with the museum delivering three times the exhibition space, 600-plus new artwork, a new architectural design and more exciting offerings.

"This expansion enables us to tap more fully into the energy all around us, in a region known for its special creativity and beauty, while greatly increasing the presentations of a collection that includes remarkable concentrations of artworks that can be found nowhere else,” said Neal Benezra, the Helen and Charles Schwab Director of SFMOMA.

With so many new additions and programs coming out of the expansion there's plenty to be excited about. Here are six things that have got us particularly enthused to visit the new SFMOMA.

The exterior of SFMOMA SFMOMA's new architectural design highlights the future for art in San Francisco (Image: Henrik Kam)

1. New Design

Locals aren't getting the old SFMOMA; not on the inside or outside. It's now a lot taller, but the internationally-acclaimed architecture firm Snohetta, who crafted the new 10-storey, 21,832-square-metre expansion, made sure it melded perfectly with SFMOMA's existing building.

2. New Artwork

The folks at SFMOMA haven't wasted any time filling up all their new space. A partnership with the world-renowned Doris and Donald Fisher Collection has secured almost 260 new works by post-war and contemporary artists to be viewed on floors four, five and six.

On top of this, the multi-year Campaign for Art has delivered more than 3,000 artworks from 200 donors to the museum including creations by Richard Diebenkorn, Jasper Johns and Jackson Pollock.

3. A New Center For Photography

The museum's Pritzker Center for Photography will also be debuted come 14 May, becoming the largest gallery, research and interpretive space devoted to photography in any USA art museum.

The 1,400-square-metre space will be filled with a portion of SFMOMA's 17,800-plus works. These photos will cover American culture and landscape including the American West.

4. A Greater Emphasis On Children & Families

The upgraded SFMOMA is more accessible to families, thanks to the new Koret Education Center, which will provide an increase in programs for children and parents. Free admission will also be granted to anyone 18 years or younger.

5. More Film & Performance Art

In a move that will surely appease modern art devotees, SFMOMA has facilitated a new partnership with the San Francisco Film Society.

With the film society's help, the museum will provide its first ongoing film program—Modern Cinema—in the renovated Phyllis Wattis Theater.

6. Culinary Delights

Sometimes art is created on the plate, which may be an understatement for the museum's new restaurant In Situ.

It has been proclaimed a "global culinary experience" and will be led by Corey Lee, chef-owner of Benu, the Michelin three-star restaurant.

"On May 14th San Francisco will experience the extraordinary scope of the SFMOMA collection for the first time and see firsthand how the newly expanded museum will be able to serve our community, art lovers and school children in exciting ways we’ve only dreamed of doing in the past,” said Charles R. Schwab, Chairman of SFMOMA’s Board of Trustees.


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Ben Stower

I love the kind of travelling that is one part strategic planning and two parts spontaneous adventure. Whether I'm exploring my local city or a small town in the middle of nowhere, I'm always hoping to find something no one else has discovered.