Elizabeth Kanost
Spencer Museum of Art

Spencer Museum extends public hours before closing for renovations May 17

Tue, 05/04/2021

Visitors in spring 2021 experience the Spencer Museum's exhibition "Healing, Knowing, Seeing the Body."

LAWRENCE — The last day to experience the Spencer Museum of Art’s current exhibitions is May 16. Public hours are extended for the next two weeks to accommodate more visitors: 1-8 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays and 1-5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Visitors are strongly encouraged to make an advance reservation. The museum’s galleries will close May 17 to begin renovations and reinstallation of exhibitions, reopening in fall 2021.

Funded in part through a National Endowment for the Humanities challenge grant, Phase II renovations will elevate all gallery spaces to the standard set by the museum’s award-winning Phase I renovation completed in 2016. A major enhancement of Phase II is the creation of a second study center embedded in the museum’s fourth-floor galleries. The Ingrid and J.K. Lee Study Center will serve as a hybrid space for class and research visits as well as temporary installations.

Other fourth-floor updates will include renovating the Kress Gallery and 2021 Gallery, which were not addressed in Phase I. Additionally, enhancements to storage will improve the long-term care of the museum’s collection. Construction for these aspects of Phase II will begin this summer and last into 2022.

The architectural changes of Phase II also provide an opportunity to rethink the installation, presentation and interpretation of fourth-floor collection galleries. While third-floor galleries will reopen in fall 2021, the reinstalled fourth-floor galleries are slated to reopen beginning in summer 2022. The updates of both Phase II renovations and gallery reinstallation will help the Spencer Museum better engage its many communities and remain a leader of academic art museums.

Even while galleries are closed, the Spencer Museum will continue providing educational opportunities and programs throughout the summer and into the fall with Spencer At Large events off-site in the community and online.

Photo: Visitors in spring 2021 experience the Spencer Museum’s exhibition “Healing, Knowing, Seeing the Body.”

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