Norton Museum of Art
The Norton Museum of Art is a world-renowned museum located in West Palm Beach, Florida. The museum first opened its doors to the public in 1941 and has since become one of the most respected art museums in the United States. The Norton Museum of Art houses an impressive collection of both European and American art, with works by masters such as Rembrandt, Monet, Cezanne, and Warhol. In addition to its world-famous permanent collection, the Norton Museum of Art also hosts temporary exhibitions throughout the year, making it a must-visit destination for art lovers from all over the world.
The Early Years
The Norton Museum of Art was founded in 1941 by Ralph Hubbard Norton and his wife Elizabeth Calhoun Norton. The Nortons were passionate art collectors and decided to build a museum to share their collection with the public. They commissioned noted architect Marion Sims Wyeth to design the museum, and construction was completed in 1941.
The museum's original holdings consisted primarily of European paintings and sculptures, as well as a small selection of American art. Over the years, the Norton family continued to donate works from their personal collection to the museum, greatly expanding its holdings. In 1971, the Norton family donated an additional 50 acres of land adjacent to the museum, which allowed for future expansion.
A New Era
In 2003, after more than 60 years at the helm, Richard J. Stoddard retired as director of the Norton Museum of Art. He was succeeded by Hope Alswang, who served as director until 2011. During her tenure, Alswang oversaw a major expansion and renovation of the museum that nearly doubled its size. She also increased the focus on contemporary art, with major exhibitions by artists such as Jeff Koons and Ai Weiwei.
In 2012, Tim Bade took over as director of the Norton Museum of Art. Under Bade's leadership, the museum has continued to grow and evolve. In 2015,the museum opened its new Chinese Garden Court, which features a traditional scholar's garden complete with a pond and pavilions. The garden is open to the public free of charge and has quickly become one of West Palm Beach's most popular attractions.
The Norton Museum of Art is a world-renowned institution that houses an impressive collection of European and American art. Founded in 1941 by Ralph Hubbard Norton and his wife Elizabeth Calhoun Norton, the museum has undergone several expansions and renovations over the years while maintaining its commitment to excellence in art education and scholarship. If you're ever in South Florida, be sure to add a visit to the Norton Museum of Art to your itinerary!
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