The Cincinnati Art Museum has received a $1 million grant for an innovative redesign of its Schmidlapp Gallery. The renovations – made possible by the grant from Jacob G. Schmidlapp Trusts, Fifth Third Bank, Trustee, along with financial support from the state – will allow visitors to connect with art and engage in focused study of collections. It will also provide orientation and connection to the Bimel Courtyard.
The plan includes the addition of a courtyard wall of windows for natural light, seating to encourage congregation, detailed curatorial interpretation around singular artworks, and the installation of Saul Steinberg’s 75-foot long “Mural of Cincinnati,” commissioned for the Terrace Plaza Hotel in 1948. New floors, lighting and state-of-the-art temperature and humidity controls also will be part of this revitalization.
Cameron Kitchin, the museum’s director, noted the plans incorporate new interpretive and visitor research and reflect the museum’s 2016-2020 strategic plan.
“The Schmidlapp Gallery will be welcoming and immediately embrace the needs of contemporary visitors,” he said. “The vibrant and accessible space will be modern and look to the future while honoring our past.”
Cincinnati companies emersion DESIGN and Monarch Construction have been contracted for the project. The renovation will be completed by the end of 2017. Installation of artworks, interactive technologies and other features will be added in early 2018.
Although changes to the space will be significant, care is being taken to minimize visitor impact during the construction period.