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Bass Museum of Art receives $7.5 million for expansion celebrating 50th anniversary
Bass Museum of Art. Photo: Robin Hill.

MIAMI BEACH, FL.- The Bass Museum of Art has announced plans for a new wing dedicated to educational facilities and exhibition space after receiving a $7.5 million grant from the City of Miami Beach, which recognizes the museum’s contributions to the City's artistic and cultural landscape. These planned additions to the museum will coincide with the museum’s 50th anniversary in 2014.

“The City of Miami Beach Mayor and Commission voted to support the Bass Museum of Art's $7.5 million grant for its expansion. Miami Beach is such a progressive city and its commitment to the arts continues to reinforce its position as the most important cultural destination in South Florida. As President of the Board of Directors and Miami Beach resident, I am thankful to the City of Miami Beach for its continued generosity and support for the Bass Museum of Art,” states George Lindemann.

The Bass Museum of Art’s Expansion Plan calls for two additional classrooms to be built adjacent to the existing Lindemann Family Creativity Center. Each of these three spaces can accommodate at minimum 25 students, with one larger space that can accommodate 40 art students or 75 people sitting in rows for a lecture, film screening or performance art. With its own entrance, separate from the rest of the museum, the space will be open and accessible after regular museum hours and in the evenings. Additionally, the museum’s expansion will make possible the simultaneous scheduling of classes and events, which will equip the museum to serve double the participants it currently serves.

In 2001, the Bass Museum of Art completed phase 1 of its expansion, which added a 20,000 ft. addition to the museum’s original, historic building, built in 1935 by Russell Pancoast. The addition, designed in 1993 by Arata Isozaki & Associates, included a switchback ramp leading to the second level, and provided additional galleries and a sculpture terrace for the museum.

"We are working to create an improved and functional design that will provide 47 percent more exhibition and program space within the museum's same building footprint. This will enhance the museum's commitment to its education and exhibition programming in a responsible and sustainable manner," says Silvia Karman Cubiña, Executive Director and Chief Curator, Bass Museum of Art.

Twenty years after the design of the addition, the museum has a newly established Board of Directors and a new Executive Director, who in 2011 jointly developed a new mission statement: we inspire and educate by exploring the connections between our historical collections and contemporary art. The key words of this mission statement are "inspire" and "educate," shifting the museum's main focus to serving the community and developing educational programming goals enriched by the exhibitions and permanent collection.

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