6 New Art Museums Opening in 2021

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January 25, 2021

When it comes to major art events and experiencing art in person, the year 2021 will hopefully be better that the previous.

This year brings us 6 new art museum openings - in Paris, New York, Berlin, Oslo, Shanghai and Hong Kong. Some of them were due to open in 2020, but have postponed their plans until the situation with the pandemic stabilizes.

Here is a selection of new art museums opening in 2021 that can serve as a great excuse to travel around the world.

Featured image: Pudong Museum of Art, courtesy of Ateliers Jean Nouvel.

Bourse de Commerce - Pinault Collection

A former stock exchange that has been converted by the architect Tadao Ando, Bourse de Commerce in Paris was due to open on January 23rd, 2021, but the ceremony was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Bourse de Commerce will showcase works from the Pinault Collection, one of the most important collections in the world today counting more than five thousand works from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The building spans 6,800 square meters of modular exhibition space, divided into rooms from 100 to 600 square meters or used as a single whole, to welcome large-scale projects.

As the owner of the collection François Pinault explains, the museum, whose cost was $170 million, represents a new chapter in his cultural project, adding to his network of permanent exhibition sites. It will present thematic displays and monographic exhibitions, as well as new productions, commissioned works, carte blanche events and in situ projects. Open to everyone and every artistic discipline, it will also offer educational programs, conferences, meetings, screenings, concerts and performances.

Featured image: Bourse de Commerce - Pinault Collection. Image by Patrick Tourneboeuf, courtesy Bourse de Commerce – Pinault Collection.

Frick Madison

A temporary home for the Frick Collection that will remain operating for the duration of renovation of its historic buildings at 1 East 70th Street, Frick Madison in New York is anticipated to open in early 2021. The collection will be on display in the Marcel Breuer–designed building on Madison Avenue, formerly home to the Whitney Museum of American Art and most recently The Met Breuer.

The Frick Collection is known for its distinguished Old Master paintings and outstanding examples of European sculpture and decorative arts. Organized chronologically and by region, the display at Frick Madison will present treasured paintings and sculptures by Bellini, Clodion, Gainsborough, Goya, Holbein, Houdon, Ingres, Piero della Francesca, Rembrandt, Titian, Turner, Velázquez, Vermeer, Whistler, and many others. The minimalism of Marcel Breuer’s mid-century architecture will provide a unique backdrop for our Old Masters to be enjoyed in a new and thought-provoking way.

Featured image: Marcel Breuer building, courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Humboldt Forum

Initially Scheduled for December 17th after many delays, the opening of the Humboldt Forum in Berlin has been pushed back yet again due to the lockdown rules in Germany. The opening of the institution was live-streamed on December 16th to offer viewers a look at the building’s interior and parts of its opening exhibition. In a statement, the Humboldt Forum foundation said it hoped to welcome visitors as soon as possible.

This $700 million cultural project authored by the Italian architect Franco Stella was built to emulate the former Prussian palace, an emblem of Germany’s imperial prowess before the Second World War. Described as "the largest cultural development in Europe", the 40,000-square-meter museum was built around a steel frame with concrete cores. Three of the museum's facades are replicas of the original palace, featuring 2,800 recreated figures and approximately 22,000 different sandstone elements, while the fourth is a modern stone facade designed by Stella.

Featured image: The Humboldt Forum, via humboldtforum.org

The New Munch Museum

A brand new museum in Oslo, the New Munch Museum is expected to open in spring 2021. Located by the city's waterfront and described as more Munch than ever before, the building designed by Estudio Herreros is tailor-made for the worlds largest collection of art by Edvard Munch.

Seeking to broaden the idea about what a museums is, MUNCH director Stein Olav Henrichsen explains it would be a meeting place for everyone for all types of cultural occasions and would provide opportunities for completely new experiences and perspectives. He explains:

Visitors to the new museum will always be able to experience the highlights of Edvard Munch’s artistic career, alongside changing exhibitions of works by other artists. 

They also plan to partner with other museums in order to bring works to Norway that have never been shown here before.

Featured image: The New Munch Museum. Photo © Adrià Goula.

Pudong Museum of Art

Designed by Atelier Jean Nouvel (AJN), Pudong Museum of Art in Shanghai is scheduled to be completed in early 2021 and it will open to the public in mid-2021. The inaugural exhibition will draw from Tate Modern's collection, followed by two more exhibitions which will bring further works from Tate’s national collection to audiences in China. Tate will also provide PMoA with training and expertise in a number of fields.

The PMoA seeks to be a stage for dialogue through art, between China and other countries. A 7-floor structure spanning 54,000 square meters of habitable space, the Museum will become a multi- use complex for the arts, featuring permanent and temporary use galleries of multiple heights, a theatre, roof terrace with sculpture garden and restaurant, various food and beverage offerings, a library and staff offices, and large viewing gallery facing across the Bund. A composition of geometric volumes, the design draws inspiration from the Suprematist Art Movement, specifically Malevich’s White on White (1918).

Featured image: Pudong Museum of Art, courtesy of Ateliers Jean Nouvel.

M+ Museum

A Herzog & de Meuron-designed museum of art and visual culture, M+ Museum in Hong Kong "has reached the point of physical completion, with final fixtures now under way," as explained by the spokesperson. The opening of the museum has been repeatedly delayed, with the latest opening date being autumn 2021.

The museum is dedicated to collecting, exhibiting, and interpreting visual art, design and architecture, moving image, and Hong Kong visual culture of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. While the M+ building is under construction, M+ continues to present events online and around Hong Kong.

Featured image: A rendering of the M+ museum of art and visual culture, now due to open in Hong Kong in autumn 2021 © Herzog & de Meuron.