Baltimore Museum of Art Selects Maryland-Based Firm for Major Renovation

Baltimore Museum of Art
Anna Vaughn Hyatt Huntington Sculpture in BMA

The Baltimore Museum of Art’s Board of Trustees recently announced its selection of the Maryland-based architecture firm Ziger/Snead to work with the Museum on its ambitious $24 million capital renovation. The decision follows a comprehensive year-long selection process. The BMA’s much-anticipated renovation—scheduled to be completed in 2014 during the BMA’s 100th Anniversary—will create dynamic spaces for art and people and ensure the BMA is a magnet for new generations of visitors.

“The BMA’s Architect Selection Committee was very impressed by Ziger/Snead’s clarity of vision and design and their success with both historic and contemporary buildings,” said Stiles Tuttle Colwill, Chair, BMA Board of Trustees. “We are confident that their design will help advance the BMA’s goal of creating a more welcoming environment for our visitors and a more beautiful setting for our magnificent collection.”

In January 2010, the Board formed an Architect Selection Committee and, recognizing the abundance of highly qualified firms in our state, voted to consider only architecture firms headquartered in Maryland.

This is the first time the BMA has focused a search exclusively on Maryland-based architects for a project of this scale. It is estimated that the entire renovation project will create 185 jobs in construction and related industries.

The capital renovation is the result of nearly a decade of careful planning by the Museum’s Board of Trustees and staff, including a long-term strategic plan, an architectural master plan, and a campaign feasibility study. Ziger/Snead will undertake conceptual design planning throughout the summer. The $24 million project will bring significant improvements for the visitor experience, including enhancements of galleries housing three major art collections—Contemporary, American, and African; improvements to the East Lobby; and upgrades to visitor amenities. Much needed improvements in essential infrastructure, including two new roofs and a state-of-the-art building automation system, will improve care of the 90,000 works of art in the BMA’s world-class collection. The BMA will remain open and will continue to offer free admission during the renovation to ensure its service to the community.

The portion of the renovation project focused on the West Wing for Contemporary Art began this year and is being led by Baltimore-based Marshall Craft Associates architectural firm, which has replaced eight of the Museum’s 10 roofs, and has experience with many Smithsonian museum projects. The new lighting system is being designed by the New York-based Renfro Design Group. When it reopens in spring 2012, the West Wing for Contemporary Art will offer a more comprehensive and of-the-moment look at the BMA’s masterpieces of contemporary art from Abstract Expressionism to the present.

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Urban Art and Antiques first published in 2007. If you are interested in becoming a contributor, let us know. Email urbanartantiques (at) gmail.com

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