Dedication to the UI Stanley Museum of Art, to celebrate the grand opening

The University of Iowa Stanley Museum of Art will combine music and art as it celebrates the dedication and opening exhibition of its new building, homecomingOn August 26-28.

The museum and its more than 1,700 works of art are returning home for the first time since 2008, when flooding forced the museum to close and eventually find a new home on campus.

To celebrate the new building and reopening, the museum, 160 W. Burlington St. Located in, a weekend of art, music, food, and entertainment is planned. The official dedication and opening remarks will take place on Friday, August 26, at 3 p.m., followed by musical performances, art stations, live entertainment, and tours. homecoming.

“I am delighted to see the response of visitors to our inaugural exhibition, homecoming” says UI Stanley Museum of Art Director Lauren Lessing. “Bringing this collection home and installing it in our galleries in a way that dazzles our audiences is the culmination of years of work by the entire museum staff. Art never looked better.”


Click on the link in the photo below to watch the live stream of the dedication ceremony on Friday, August 26 at 3pm.


A new home means a new beginning for the museum. Lessing says museum staff are taking risks and pushing boundaries with the inaugural exhibit, doing things in the museum today that have never been done before.

“We’re offering our gallery lessons in English and Spanish. We’re showcasing our world-class collection of African art in a new way that breaks with the anthropological models we’ve followed in the past, and that emphasizes movement and dialogue. We’re showing new art in the collection and rarely with old favorites. Artifacts on display,” Lessing says.

The goal, Lessing says, is to display art in a way that sparks curiosity and allows visitors to see familiar pieces of art in new and surprising ways.

A grand reopening is long overdue. The art collection was without a permanent home for 14 years. The new building on Burlington Street, adjacent to the UI Main Library and Gibson Square Park, received approval in 2017 from the Board of Regents, State of Iowa. The following year, a generous gift from Richard and Mary Jo Stanley gave the museum its new name, and in 2019, the university completed the three-story, 45,000-square-foot building we see today.

“The university is fully behind this project,” Lessing says. “If UI leaders hadn’t made this museum a fundraising priority, if they hadn’t allowed us to break ground on a new building before the capital campaign was complete, or if they hadn’t allowed the construction project to continue through the pandemic, we wouldn’t be here today.

“I am deeply grateful for their trust and dedication to ensuring that the University of Iowa remains an outstanding public university for the arts.”

Admission to the UI Stanley Museum of Art is free and open to all. Seating is limited for the opening weekend festivities, so attendees are encouraged to bring a blanket or chair.

Visitors can explore the galleries and enjoy curatorial introductions homecoming After Friday’s opening ceremony, and 45-minute, docent-led homecoming Tours will be available at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m. on Saturday, August 27; and noon, 2 p.m., and 4 p.m. on Sunday, August 28.

Gallery hours for the weekend are 4:30 to 8:30 pm on Friday, August 26; 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Saturday, August 27; and noon to 5:30 p.m. Sunday, August 28.

A complete schedule of entertainment and events is available at stanleymuseum.uiowa.edu event/94426/0.

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