Dear Members and Friends,
We’ve done it: the new wing of the Gardner Museum is complete. When we began planning for the future more than a decade ago, we had no idea where we would end up. We only knew that to build an extension worthy of the Gardner Museum, we would have to think as imaginatively as Gardner herself. And so on January 19 we open to the public an extraordinary extension, featuring a spacious, light-filled lobby; an intimate and acoustically sublime performance hall; on-site greenhouses; a comfortable orientation space for planning and reflecting on a visit to the galleries; a soaring special exhibition gallery; an education studio; artist-in-residence apartments; innovative conservation labs; and a marvelous café and gift shop. We now have a building that preserves the palace, offloads many functions from the palace, and provides new public programs space.
These programs, developed by curators from our cornerstone departments, have become increasingly popular with the public. But their very popularity was endangering the collection and straining the capacities of the historic building, which was not designed with such varied and sustained use in mind. This complex, dynamic work of art was in danger of being “loved to death.”
The board, after much deliberation, determined that we needed to build an addition a work of art in its own right that would be a workshop, the bustling center of the Museum’s moving parts, so that the historic building could be returned to its original purpose: a palace for pure, undiluted pleasure in art.
This new wing, brilliantly conceived by Renzo Piano, ushers the Museum into a new century, suggesting possibilities for our programs, our patronage, and our visitors.
With the new wing, I believe, we have fully realized Isabella Gardner’s extraordinary vision. Her collection, her gift to the city, is now yours to explore. Please do celebrate with us on the 19th, and return to discover the pleasures and programs the new wing offers, and the magic the palace conjures once again.
Norma Jean Calderwood Director,
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
Gardner Museum to Open New Wing and Restored Historic Galleries to Public on January 19, 2012
The landmark expansion, the culmination of eleven years of planning, fundraising, and construction, will allow the Museum to enhance programs, reach new audiences, and preserve the Palace and historic collection for generations.... Full story
Free Timed-Entry Tickets for Bank of America Community Opening Days Now Available!
We’re thanking the community for your support with three days of free entry. Come celebrate with us! After eleven years of planning, construction, and finishing details, we’re just days away from opening the new, Renzo Piano-designed wing.... Full story
Expanded Museum Gives Visitors More Ways to Explore, Engage
When the new, Renzo Piano-designed wing opens on January 19, an enlarged and enhanced lobby and a new visitor orientation space will introduce new possibilities for exploration.... Full story
Gardner Courtyard to Open 2012 with Midwinter Tropics Display
Escape the gray days of winter in the Gardner Courtyard, where tropical flowers and ferns soothe the spirit and fire the imagination.... Full story
Member Preview Days
Jan. 16-18, 11-5pm
Member Preview Reception
Jan. 17, 5pm
Bank of America Community Opening Days
Jan. 19-21, 11-5pm
After Hours Opening Bash
Jan. 19, 7-11:30pm
Sunday Concert Series
Returns in January
Jan. 29, 1:30pm
George Li, piano
Feb. 5, 1:30pm
Returns Feb. 2
Pierrot Lunaire at 100
Feb. 2, 7pm
Join the Gardner!
The Concert Podcast
Free! Live music from the Gardner
Café G, the Gardner's café, is taking reservations for lunch during Member Preview Days. Call 617 566 1088 to reserve. Reservations required.
Gift at the Gardner, the museum store, will open this month.
Wed-Mon | 11am-5pm
Thurs until 9pm
Wed-Mon | 11am-4pm
Thurs until 6pm
617 278 5156
Programs + Events
617 566 1401 + online
Opening this month
Opening year exhibitions are made possible in part by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Bank of America is the sponsor of Community Opening Days and education programs. Community programs are also supported by J.P. Morgan Private Bank and The Yawkey Foundation. Thursday evening programming is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts. Fidelity Investments is the opening year sponsor of Jazz at the Gardner. Other opening year sponsors include First Republic Bank, Hemenway & Barnes LLP, Hemenway Trust Company LLC, TD Bank, and Welch & Forbes. The Museum receives operating support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Media Sponsor: Boston Globe Media, Inc.