The Baltimore Museum of Art Set To Build New Art Center Dedicated to Henri Matisse

The Baltimore Museum of Art houses the largest and most comprehensive collection of works by Henri Matisse. The Collection encompasses more than 1,200 works by Matisse anchored by the famed Cone Collection of modern art.

Henri Matisse, ‘Blue Nude’. 1907

Thanks to a $5 million donation from the Baltimore based Ruth Carol Fund, a foundation that supports the arts, education, and medical research, The Museum will now construct a new 3,400 square-foot center dedicated to the life and work of Henri Matisse.

The new art center will be named, 'The Ruth R. Marder Center for Matisse Studies', in honor of the fund's founder who was also a longtime museum supporter. The Matisse Center which is expected to open in 2021, will mount a rotating selection of small exhibits of Matisse’s artworks on paper and will be a resource for scholars conducting research on the French painter.

This addition cements The Baltimore Museum of Art as the premier public institution in the world for studying Matisse and experiencing his art, according to museum director Christopher Bedford. Now visitors of the BMA will have two dedicated areas to see works by Matisse: the Cone Wing and the Marder Center.

In 1949, the BMA received 500 works by Matisse as part of a bequest from Baltimore sisters Claribel and Etta Cone, who were avid art collectors of Matisse and his peers. Thanks to Matisse's daughter and other family members, the collection grew an additional 700 artworks bringing the collection to over 1,200.

The center will be constructed on the first floor of the museum near the contemporary wing in an area that has been closed since 2014. It will be overseen by Jay M. Fisher, who once served as the BMA’s chief curator.


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