Do You Know How Lucky We Are?
Lori Hope Baumel
I have been anticipating this grand reopening for nearly two years. From what I have seen and heard – it will be spectacular. How lucky we are to have this newly expanded institution right in our own backyard! After five years of planning and construction, the long-awaited completion of the project will see the Norton transformed into a spacious and more engaging “museum in a garden.” The enlarged building will have 35 percent more gallery space for exhibitions, major new facilities for education and public programs, a new entrance with a dramatic 43-foot-high canopy, and a public garden—the first ever designed for a museum by architecture firm Foster + Partners, under the direction of Pritzker Prize-winning architect Lord Norman Foster. The project reorients the Norton’s entrance to the main thoroughfare of South Dixie Highway, restoring the symmetry of the museum’s original 1941 design.
The South Florida community is fortunate to have the transformed Norton Museum of Art reopen to the public on Saturday, February 9, 2019. There will be free festivities from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The day will start with a parade around the building led by Florida Atlantic University’s Parliament Sound Pep Band and will feature dozens of giant collaged puppets and ornaments made by members of the community.
The fun continues with a 10:30 a.m. ribbon cutting and a free open house. Museum visitors are invited to view eight special exhibitions, new galleries, new acquisitions, and, of course, see some of their old favorite works. What a wonderful opportunity to learn about the new programs coming up as this new chapter in the Norton’s history begins! On opening day, you can experience live music throughout the campus, shop in the new museum store, and dine in the fabulous new restaurant. Bring the family or peruse the new venue on your own. The Norton has several outstanding programs coming up in February and will continue throughout the year. I look forward to sharing this experience with all of our Around Wellington readers!
To see an informative video about the museum’s expansion, go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-pDPbow9reE&feature=youtu.be
Live… Go… Do!
“Top 5” events in store for us at the Norton in February
1) Live! At the Norton Series Kick-off Concert
Sunday, February 10th at 3 p.m.
This annual concert series returns for its 17th season Sunday, February 10, with the Music of David Lang. One of America’s most acclaimed composers, Lang’s opera, orchestra, chamber, and solo works have been performed around the world by ensembles such as the BBC Symphony, The New York Philharmonic, Santa Fe Opera, the Kronos Quartet, and others. Lang will introduce the concert, which features an array of musicians performing his work. Tickets are $20 for the general public and $15 for Members. Visit www.Norton.org for tickets and more information.
2) Art After Dark Returns on February 15
And continues on Fridays from 5 to 10 p.m.
The Norton’s popular weekly Art After Dark – Where Culture and Entertainment Meet – has an exciting new vibe! The series moves to Fridays, expands by an hour to 10 p.m., and includes the debut of programs such as POP sessions – where during the last Friday of each month the evening’s offerings are “louder and looser” and…
Norton Cinema, which will present screenings of independent and rarely seen films and documentaries. An eclectic array of activities changes every week. These types of events emulate the types of programs experienced at Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum in New York.
The resumption of Art After Dark features Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Hilton Als in conversation with Norton Director Hope Alswang, and a performance by New York-based singer-songwriter Sirintip and her quartet, playing a blend of pop, R&B, electronic, and jazz.
This edition of Art After Dark features photo-based artist Adam Fuss who will discusses his camera-less photography practice with Tim B. Wride, William and Sarah Ross Soter Curator of Photography. In addition, Ellen E. Roberts, Harold and Anne Berkley Smith Curator of American Art, discusses her new book about the museum’s namesake, Ralph Norton and His Museum. Popular, homegrown ‘90s acoustic pop-rock band INHOUSE presents a “One-Night-Only” 20th- anniversary reunion concert with its original lineup.
3) Chinese New Year Celebration
Ring in the “Year of the Boar”
February 16 – Noon to 8 p.m. Admission: FREE
To showcase its world-class collection of Chinese art, the festivities commence with dragon and lion dances performed by the Lee Koon Hung Kung Fu Chinese Martial Arts Association. The dances are followed by an array of programs and activities in celebration of Chinese culture and the Norton’s exceptional collection of Chinese art, including a concert by the acclaimed ensemble Music From China, and culminating with fireworks over the Intracoastal Waterway.
4) Black History Family Day
February 23 – 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
The Norton’s second annual Black History Family Day celebrates the museum’s collection of work by artists of African descent with specialized tours, family workshops, talks, and a teen art studio for all to explore. Through film, photography, and performance, Black History Family Day will illuminate the communities that call Florida home. Highlights include a performance by the Olujimi Dance Theatre, directed by Michelle Grant-Murray; and a tribute in music and poetry to Florida native James Weldon Johnson on the centennial of the iconic song, Lift Every Voice and Sing (also known as The Negro National Anthem), for which he wrote the lyrics.
5) See the Norton’s Large-Scale Tapestry by Artist Pae White
Woven at a workshop in Belgium, American artist Pae White’s 40-foot-long, 15-foot-tall tapestry, titled Eikón, will be the inaugural centerpiece of the new Norton’s architectural heart, the Ruth and Carl Shapiro Great Hall. The 3,600-square-foot, sky-lit gathering space features a 300-square-foot, rectangular window that looks out directly onto one of the marvels of the museum’s landscape—an 80-year-old, 65-foot-tall banyan tree. Like Lord Norman Foster, who was inspired by the banyan tree and incorporated it as a crucial part of the expansion’s design, White was also enthralled by the tree and designed the work to play with ideas of reflection and illusion. The work weaves in hints of green to reference the magical presence of the tree. Pae White has created a work of art that is as dynamic and entrancing as the new Great Hall created by Lord Foster.
About the Norton Museum:
Founded in 1941, the Norton Museum of Art is recognized for its distinguished holdings in American, European, and Chinese art, and a continually expanding presence for photography and contemporary art. Its masterpieces of 19th century and 20th century European painting and sculpture include works by Brancusi, Gauguin, Matisse, and Picasso, and American works by Stuart Davis, Hopper, O’Keeffe, Pollock, and Sheeler. The Norton presents special exhibitions, lectures, tours, and programs for adults and children throughout the year. In 2011, the Norton launched RAW (Recognition of Art by Women), featuring the work of a living female painter or sculptor and funded by the Leonard and Sophie Davis Fund/MLDauray Arts Initiative. In 2012, the Norton established the biennial, international Rudin Prize for Emerging Photographers in partnership with Beth Rudin DeWoody, named in honor of her late father, Lewis Rudin.
The Norton Museum
1450 S Dixie Hwy, West Palm Beach, FL 33401
10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday
10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Friday
11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
Closed on Wednesdays and major holidays.
Seniors: (60+): $15
Students: $5 with valid school ID,
Children: Free for ages 12 and under
Teachers: Free with valid school ID
Active Military (and immediate family) free with valid military ID.
Fridays and Saturdays: FREE
The admission is free to the public on Fridays and Saturdays thanks to the generosity of The Lunder Foundation – Peter and Paula Lunder Family. Free Saturdays are made possible by the generosity of the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation and Damon and Katherine
Free parking is available across the street at 1501 S. Dixie Highway.
For additional information, please call (561) 832-5196, or visit www.norton.org.