Corcoran Galleries Close for Renovations

National Gallery will start renovations to update public exhibition spaces.

September 29, 2014
Gallery space in the Corcoran building on 17th Street closed to the public this weekend as the National Gallery of Art prepares to start yearlong renovations. The Corcoran School of the Arts and Design within the George Washington University’s Columbian College of Arts and Sciences will remain open and operating throughout the process.
 
The George Washington University acquired the Corcoran building as part of its historic agreements with the Corcoran and the National Gallery of Art. In its updated form, the Corcoran building will house a Legacy Gallery of important works from the Corcoran collection, selected by NGA, as well as special exhibitions of contemporary work. 
 
Junior Camila Rondon, the Student Association president of the Corcoran School, said that following a demonstration on Saturday, several students, faculty and staff gathered Sunday to walk through the 17th Street building’s halls and prepare for its new iteration.
 
“There were old faces—former alumni and former faculty members—and lots of students, and it was more of a chance to enjoy the space and celebrate what it means to the arts community,” she said. “Everyone there was excited about the renovations and what the updated Corcoran will look like.”
 
Ms. Rondon said she’s looking forward to seeing the NGA’s legacy collection of Corcoran works and the new exhibition spaces.
 
“NGA is a great museum and organization, and I’m excited for what they have planned,” she said.
 
The arts agreements signed by GW, the Corcoran and NGA will maintain the historic Corcoran building as a showplace for art and a home for the Corcoran School and its programs, creating a global hub for the arts at GW. It also will safeguard the Corcoran’s collection and increase access to it as a public resource in Washington, D.C. GW will preserve the Corcoran School’s legacy and expand arts opportunities for its students.
 
Later this fall, the university will begin critical improvements to classroom and studio spaces in the building. Continued renovations will occur in phases over the next several years.
 
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