Be Among the First to Explore the Blanton Museum’s Spectacular New Outdoor Art Space
A Pedestrian-Friendly Public Space Where Art Meets Nature
By Meher Qazilbash
Photos courtesy of Blanton Museum
On Saturday, May 13, the Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin is unveiling a new outdoor art space to the public.
The grand opening event features live music, remarks by special guests and a participatory art experience designed by Austin natives, the Haas Brothers.
Additionally, the Moody Patio, the Blanton’s primary outdoor gathering space, will be activated for the celebration.
Bites and drinks from local vendors, including Flyrite Chicken, Mama A’s, Tamale Addiction, Haymaker and Amy’s Ice Cream will be available for purchase.
Renowned Austin performers Gina Chavez, The Peterson Brothers, DJ Ella Ella and DJ Adrian Quesada will play individual sets.
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“We’re thrilled to invite the community to the party we’ve all been waiting for,” shares Blanton Director Simone Wicha. “It’s the opening of a new gathering place for Austin that offers a different way to experience the Blanton.”
“I cannot wait for visitors to stroll along the pathways and pass under the stunning shade canopy,” Wicha says. “I cannot wait for them explore the powerful, immersive new artworks and enjoy performances on the Moody Patio’s outdoor stages.”
More Outdoor Charm for the Blanton
Designed to improve visitors’ experience of the Blanton’s 200,000-square-foot campus, the layout is pedestrian-friendly, stimulating and gorgeous.
Large dreamy petal sculptures stretch out over the pavilion, providing cool shade and playful beauty.
Accenting the walkways are colorful paintings and murals, an innovative sound art installation and native plants.
International and Local Teamwork
Acclaimed international design firm Snøhetta led the project, extending the artistic spirit inside the museum’s galleries throughout the grounds.
It also aimed to provide a welcoming gateway between the University of Texas campus and the city of Austin.
Lead architects Craig Dykers, John Newman, and Elaine Molinar are not only accomplished professionals but also alumni of the University of Texas. This exciting Austin connection further strengthens their bond with the project and the local community.
“We are grateful to our partners in this transformative project,” says Wicha. “They include the Moody Foundation, Sarah and Ernest Butler, the Still Water Foundation, the Kahng Foundation, Sally and Tom Dunning and other generous donors.”
“We would also like to express our appreciation to the Snøhetta architects and the artists involved, including Bill Fontana and the late Carmen Herrera,” adds Wicha.
“We’re also thankful for the immense support from our members and visitors throughout the construction.”
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Updated Hours and New Programming
The Blanton is launching extended operating hours and fun new programming.
The museum will remain open until 8 pm on Saturdays. It will also offer free admission on Tuesdays instead of Thursdays.
The grand opening event kicks off a new program called Second Saturdays. It features programs on the second Saturday of each month, inviting the community to gather and enjoy music, food and more.
The first Second Saturdays program starts at 3 pm on May 13, directly following the grand opening celebration.
The grand opening event is free to the public from 2 pm to 3 pm. RSVP to attend.