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Model of new Bainbridge Art Museum revealed
After months of planning, 10 preliminary concepts, hundreds of comments from community members and focus group participants, the Bainbridge Art Museum board of directors unveiled the final design for the new art museum at the corner of State Route 305 and Winslow Way during last Friday’s Art Walk.
The 15,000-square-foot, two-story structure, designed by Bainbridge architect Matthew Coates, features a dramatic curve that is designed to draw visitors in toward the glass-banked entry. Flanking the entry are a cafe and retail space. Through a “grand hall,” the 2,115-square foot main gallery will house both the permanent collection and singular exhibits by Bainbridge and Northwest artists.
Admission to the museum will be free.
The second story consists of 1,400 square feet of classroom space, administrative offices and restrooms.
An adjacent 4,000-square-foot building will hold a 100-seat auditorium.
The museum is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, and the board has raised nearly 72 percent of the $12 million building costs through private donations.
At the first of three community input events, arts patron and board co-vicepresident Cynthia Sears, said she was hoping the new museum would be “an exquisite container” for the art it will house.
Part of the art it will house is art from the estate of Max and Sherry Grover.
In May, the museum was bequeathed the estate of the Port Townsend artist and his late wife who passed away in December.
In accepting the bequest, John Baker, president of the Bainbridge Art Museum board, said, “The museum is greatly honored by this most generous and meaningful gift which will further our mission to build an educational institution that engages a diverse population with the art of our region and our time.”
Sherry was involved in developing plans for the new museum from the outset and served as a member of its founding board. She had a passionate interest in education, art, and community and saw the museum as a way of uniting and strengthening all three.
Max Grover is nationally known for colorful, exuberant paintings he exhibits in West Coast galleries and those which have appeared in many children’s books.
For more information, visit the Web site at www.bainbridgeartmuseum.org.
Previously, residents had the opportunity to view 10 proposed concepts created by Bainbridge architect Matthew Coates and give input on the designs. From there, the Bainbridge Art Museum Board of Directors met with Coates to come up with a new design, synthesized from the original 10, that reflected community input.
A formal unveiling was scheduled for 5:15 p.m. today with an introduction by board president John Baker. Board co-vice president David Lewis will provide additional information about the design concept. The Discovery Center will be open until 8 p.m. tonight for those who wish to see the design up close.
A slideshow and sneak preview of the museum’s art collection will be shown. On display will be sculptural work from Kristin Tollefson, a rich mix of painting styles by local artists Gayle Bard, Richard Stine, Max Grover and Michael Pontieri, and work from Inupiaq wood carver Larry Ahvakana.
Also on exhibit is silver candelabra created by the late Finnish artist Heikki Seppa, of Bainbridge, which appeared in the opening titles and credits of the PBS series, “Craft in America.”
The design may undergo additional changes since it needs to go through a city review process, beginning with the Design Review Board.
– Connie Mears