In anticipation of this major expansion and to underscore a spirit of dynamic growth, the Museum is changing its name to American Folk Art Museum. The new name emphasizes the American experience within a global mission. The American Folk Art Museum’s Inaugural Season of Exhibitions, launched with the opening of the new building, will illustrate the Museum’s commitment to an expanded range of interests from traditional folk art of the 18th and 19th centuries to the work of contemporary self-taught artists from the US and abroad.
American Folk Art MuseumName Change
The American Folk Art Museum’s increasingly broadened outlook has been evident in a series of rotating exhibitions organized by the Museum over the past several years, including exhibitions on the folk art of Latin America, England, and Norway, among other countries and continents. The Museum is currently presenting the work of 20th century European and American self-taught artists who fit French artist Jean Dubuffet’s definition of art brut. A number of paintings by artists represented in the exhibition ABCD: A Collection of Art Brut have already entered the Museum’s permanent collection.At the Museum by Jason Wiggins
The American Folk Art Museum is small and can be somewhat hard to find. The museum’s permanent exhibit has a diverse range of objects, quilts, hunting decoys, portraits, decorative pottery and boxes, weathervanes and religious objects, paintings and crucifixes; basically, artwork that you most likely won’t find in other museums of American art. There’s a lot of information explaining the history and importance of the work, but even if you stop to read everything, you won’t end up spending more than two hours here. The staff of the museum is friendlier than those of a lot of other museums, making it a pleasure to visit.About the New Building
The new building will quadruple the Museum’s gallery space for the display of its expanded permanent collection and special exhibitions, provide educational facilities, and consolidate the staff offices. Tod Williams Billie Tsien and Associates’ first major public project in New York City, the new facility will fulfill the Museum’s long-term goal of establishing a permanent home for the study and appreciation of American folk art and allow the Museum to display a substantial number of artworks from its collection of 4,000 objects. It will also be home to the Museum’s Contemporary Center, dedicated to the study and appreciation of the work of contemporary self-taught artists. The Museum will continue operating its current gallery space, the Eva and Morris Feld Gallery at Lincoln Square, as a branch museum, ensuring a significant presence in two of New York’s most important cultural districts—the Lincoln Center area and midtown Manhattan, near the Museum of Modern Art, the American Craft Museum, and the Museum of Television & Radio.