U's Weisman Art Museum expansion starts today

Twice as much gallery space
Since opening the original Frank Gehry building in 1993, the Weisman Art Museum has experienced tremendous growth and international visibility. The expansion will double the size of the galleries for collections and exhibitions as well as allow for the addition of new programming.
Photo by Rik Sferra

A $14 million expansion begins Monday of the Frank Gehry-designed Weisman Art Museum that will add four new galleries and allow for more exhibition of the museum's permanent collection.

Weisman President Lyndel King says Gehry is overseeing the expansion of the iconic steel-clad building on the University of Minnesota'a Twin Cities campus.

"It's pretty rare for an architect to get the chance do an addition to his own building, but in this case - and in this case for sure - with Frank still around, I don't think he'd have wanted anybody else mucking with his building," he said. "I think it would have been very hard for anybody else to do it, so it was a no-brainer for us."

The addition will be on the side closest to the Coffman student union building. The museum will remain open until October 2010 as construction goes on around it and will then close for a year for final work.

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