SAN ANTONIO, TX.- The McNay Art Museum is ready to showcase its new Jane and Arthur Stieren Center for Exhibitions and with it, more of the museums acclaimed collection of modern French and American art. The McNay officially reopens its doors with a two-day grand opening celebration June 7 and 8.
With the addition of the 45,000-square-foot Stieren Center, the McNay nearly doubles the size of its exhibition space allowing the presentation of larger and more varied shows while freeing up existing galleries to show more of the museums permanent collection year round.
After many years of planning and preparation, the McNay is ready to inaugurate a new chapter in its history, stated Dr. William J. Chiego, director of the museum. With the new Stieren Center, we have dramatically increased access to our collections and exhibitions while being able to provide a new level of service to the community.
Renowned French architect Jean-Paul Viguier designed the serene yet modern Stieren Center to compliment McNays Spanish Colonial-style original mansion while taking advantage of the abundance of South Texas natural light. The long, low two-story building highlights the natural slope of the site and features an innovative glass and steel roof system with movable shades and silk-screened glass panels that allow the museum to adjust the amount of sunlight for each exhibition.
The Stieren Centers inaugural exhibition, American Art Since 1945: In a New Light, marks the first time the museum has exhibited the full extent of its contemporary collection. The exhibition will also feature recent acquisitions including works by Willem de Kooning, Alexander Liberman, John Chamberlain and Kiki Smith.
In addition to American Art Since 1945: In a New Light, The McNay will open with four other exhibitions: Jean-Paul Viguier: Cool Models/Maquettes Froides in the Tobin Exhibition Galleries; Architecture in Print in the Garden Paperworks Gallery; The Ballets Russes at 100: Treasures from the Tobin Collection and Rarities: Uncommon and Unique Prints from the Collection.
With its grand re-opening, the McNay is implementing a new admissions policy. Like most private and publicly-operated museums worldwide, the McNay cannot continue to present high-quality exhibitions and programming while maintaining the buildings, the collections and grounds with a donation-suggested entrance policy. Therefore, beginning June 10, regular admission pricing will be:
Students (13+): $5
Active Military: $5
Children (12 and under): Free
The McNay will offer free admission every Thursday evening from 4pm until 9pm and on the first Sunday of each month.
The opening of the new Stieren Center unveils a new era at the McNay, necessitating a few fundamental changes in how we operate, said Dr. William J. Chiego, director of the McNay Art Museum. Were now a full-access museum providing the opportunity to see our ever-growing permanent collection along with larger special exhibitions and expanded educational programming. Today is a great time to become a member and reap benefits such as invitations to openings and other special events, priority reservations for educational programs, museum store discounts, travel opportunities, and, of course, free admission.
Jean-Paul Viguier designed the new Jane and Arthur Stieren Center for Exhibitions with project architect Blin Trincal of Jean-Paul Viguier S.A. darchitecture. Directing the building project on behalf of the McNay are Robert Portnoff, AIA, and Antonio Dominguez of the Paratus Group of New York.
San Antonio-based Ford Powell & Carson, Inc., a multi-disciplinary design firm with deep roots in south Texas, is executive architect for the Stieren Center. Ford Powell & Carson knows the McNay well having expanded the museum in several increments between 1970 and 1982. Founder ONeil Ford (1905-1982) dominated the architectural scene in San Antonio during the middle decades of the 20th century as an adept practitioner of regionally sensitive design.