ConnieRickRandyAliceBlackMountainCollegeGrandReOpeningImg1Our {Re}OPENING marks the completion of Phase 1 of our Windgate Charitable Foundation-funded expansion project. Our space has been redesigned and renovated by internationally-known artist and designer Randy Shull.

At the end of December 2014, minutes after BMCM+AC staff moved museum storage to our new storage facility located diagonally across the street from our current space, Shull and his team (Sergio Gomez Franco and Design Apprentice Carley Brandau) began the interior renovations in earnest. Weeks before this, Shull had been fabricating original furniture, with designs inspired by Josef and Anni Albers, in his cavernous Biltmore studio.  Shull has sculpted a more accessible museum, library, and study center with multiple ways to access the history and legacy of BMC, a more efficient workspace, and an immersive gallery that takes its aesthetic inspiration and orientation from Black Mountain College. 

In keeping with Black Mountain College’s historic emphasis on process as integral to the concept of artistic creation, every step of this project has been documented. Check the special project Tumblr and Instagram, both curated by Carley Brandau. 

After a surprisingly quick turn-around, our new space was unveiled to the public on January 30, 2015 with a Grand {Re}Opening reception coinciding with the opening of poemumbles: thirty years of Susan Weil’s poem/images.

Many patrons found themselves coming back in the following weeks to visit the artwork separately though, because our new space was packed to the brim! It was an amazing sight to see our newly expanded capacity pushed to its fullest at the first available opportunity. It reaffirmed for us just how necessary the renovation project was and how supportive and active the Asheville art-going crowd can be.

Shull addressed the packed house about the thoughts behind his designs, and his attempts to draw a lineage to the architects and designers at BMC and the Bauhaus. He emphasized his desire to design the space with minimal waste and visual invasiveness, allowing the space and the works to breathe and speak for themselves.

Susan Weil was even able to make a (digital) appearance! The poemumbles exhibition, featuring 30 years of Weil’s daily poem-collaging rituals, as well as oral histories of her work and time at Black Mountain, will be on display until May 23rd!

Stay tuned for more updates on our expansion, as we prepare to add a second gallery space across the street at 67 Broadway. Expanded space means opportunity for interaction with artifacts and artwork related to BMC, as well as expanded programming and outreach abilities! This is an exciting time in the history of our museum, and we want to extend a heartfelt thanks to everyone who continues to fuel us with interest and support!