MoMA closing this summer for final stage of $400M overhaul

Museum will be closed from June 15 to Oct. 21

11 West 53 Street (Credit: MoMa and Pixabay)
11 West 53 Street (Credit: MoMa and Pixabay)

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As it enters the home stretch of its $400 million expansion, New York’s Museum of Modern Art will be closing its doors for fours months this summer and fall, from June 15 to Oct. 21, for a full reconfiguration of its galleries, according to the New York Times.

The new configuration, which will juxtapose artwork from different mediums instead of separating them in a discipline-based system, aims to give new prominence to previously overlooked works in its massive collection.

MoMA bought the property adjacent to its West 53rd Street location, the former home of the American Folk Art Museum, for $32.1 million in 2011. The museum’s overhaul involved expanding its lobby, and creating theaters, a library, classrooms and gardens, along with the new gallery spaces.

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Though the museum will be missing out on a significant amount of summer tourism revenue, private donations may help cover some of the costs. The museum will soon be announcing a $200 million donation from the estate of David Rockefeller, the philanthropist and banker, who died in 2017.

The expansion was also funded with a $100 million donation from media baron David Geffen in 2016.

During its previous renovation in 2004, MoMA moved to temporary space in Queens for two years. This year’s much shorter turnaround means a relocation will be unnecessary, Lowry said.

Tishman Speyer CEO Jerry Speyer was MoMA chairman from 2007 until last year. He was replaced by Leon Black, founder of the private equity firm Apollo Global Management. [NYT] — Kevin Sun