Yale Art Gallery Celebrates Reopening of Kahn Building

In celebration of the December 10 reopening of its landmark Louis Kahn Building after a three-year renovation, the Yale University Art Gallery, 1111 Chapel St., will open its doors to the public for a series of free events and special programs.

The reopening of Kahn’s renowned modernist structure marks the completion of a renovation and restoration process that includes most visibly the installation of a new window-wall system, which meticulously preserves the building’s architecture while using materials and technology that were unavailable at the time of its construction; the removal of a roof over an outdoor courtyard, which restores the building’s original five-story façade; the restoration of the six-foot-high brick wall that originally surrounded the courtyard; and an expansion of the Gallery’s famed sculpture garden. Among the indoor improvements: the building’s mechanical system has been replaced and its exhibit lighting capacity, doubled. An enlarged elevator will more easily accommodate the transport of large-scale artwork within the building.

The public events honoring this milestone will be kicked off by a panel discussion, titled “What It Wanted to Be: Louis Kahn’s Yale University Art Gallery,” on December 1, 5:30 p.m. Duncan Hazard of Polshek Partnership Architects, the firm that designed the building’s renovation, and Susan Matheson, chief curator of the Yale University Art Gallery, will be among the distinguished panelists.

The second event planned in conjunction with the Kahn building reopening will be a lecture, “Louis I. Kahn and the Ruins of Rome,” on December 8 at 5:30 p.m., by celebrated architectural historian Vincent Scully, the Sterling Professor Emeritus of the History of Art at Yale.

The panel discussion and lecture will both take place in the Robert J. McNeil, Jr. Lecture Hall in the Yale University Art Gallery.

At 5:30 p.m. on December 9, Paul Goldberger, architecture critic of The New Yorker and a Yale College graduate, will deliver a lecture, titled “Yale and the Promise of the Modern,” in the Robert J. McNeil, Jr., Lecture Hall, Yale University Art Gallery.

The Grand Reopening Day on December 10 will begin with a ribbon cutting ceremony at the entrance to the Kahn building at 12:45 p.m.

The day’s events include two public screenings of the acclaimed autobiographical documentary “My Architect: A Son’s Journey.” The film, in which the director Nathaniel Kahn goes on an odyssey in search of his estranged late father, will be screened at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. in the Louis Kahn Lecture Hall of the Yale Center for British Art, 1080 Chapel St. Across the street from the Yale University Art Gallery, the first of the famed architect’s built projects, the British Art Center is the last of Kahn’s projects on which construction was begun in his lifetime.

The rest of the day at the Gallery, which will be open from 1–6 p.m., will feature curators’ presentations on the reinstallation of the individual collections. The following is a schedule of the curators’ presentations, with the name and title of the curator.

Asian Art, 1:30 p.m.
David Sensabaugh, the Ruth and Bruce Dayton Curator of Asian Art

Early European Art, 2:30 p.m.
Laurence Kanter, the Lionel Goldfrank III Curator of Early European Art

African Art, 3:30 p.m.
Frederick John Lamp, the Frances and Benjamin Benenson Foundation Curator of African Art

Modern and Contemporary Art, 4:30 p.m.
Jennifer Gross, the Seymour H. Knox, Jr., Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art

All curators’ presentations take place in the Robert J. McNeil, Jr., Lecture Hall, Yale University Art Gallery. Those wishing to attend these events are advised to arrive early, as seating is limited.

For more information, visit the Yale University Art Gallery website at http://artgallery.yale.edu/pages/info/support_news.html

Share this with Facebook Share this with Twitter Share this with LinkedIn Share this with Email Print this

Media Contact

Dorie Baker: dorie.baker@yale.edu, 203-432-1345