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News Release: 12/8/2016

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December 08, 2016
Claremont Museum of Art Now Open at the Depot
 
The historic Claremont Depot has come to life again, reincarnated as a jewel of a small art museum. The Claremont Museum of Art opened its doors to an enthusiastic crowd on November 20.

The Museum is centrally located in Claremont Village at 200 W. First Street, just steps away from the Metrolink Claremont Station. It will be open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4:00pm with free admission through December. The museum will also be open 6-9:00pm the First Saturday of each month for the Art Walk.

The opening exhibition, (re)Generation: Six Decades of Claremont Artists, features selections from the museum’s permanent collection that reflect our region’s rich artistic legacy from the influence of Millard Sheets and the artists who arrived in the 1940s to the GIs who came to study after WWII, to the many contemporary artists who continue to call Claremont home. The exhibition, generously sponsored by Gould Asset Management LLC, will be on view through March 12, 2017.

The Claremont Museum of Art entered into a lease agreement with the City of Claremont for the adaptive reuse of the historic building. Thanks to generous and enthusiastic community support, the Museum raised over $150,000 and Phase I of the renovation is complete.

With its stunning Spanish Colonial Revival architecture, the Depot served as a Santa Fe train station from 1927 to 1967. Under the direction of local architect John Bohn and Bob Soderberg of Alchemy Construction the former Foothill Transit Ticket Office has been transformed with a second “skin,” so art can be installed on the new walls without harming the original structure.  The elegant Atrium has been polished up with new gallery lights in the chandelier, new paint, and some much needed repair work. The bathrooms have also been renewed with all new fixtures, paint and new lighting.  The changes are so subtle and ingenious that they mask the incredible amount of time, effort and creativity that went into the renovation.

Phase II, will focus on the two most eastern rooms in the building that will require more extensive renovation and will require additional time and resources. The City of Claremont will be partnering with CMA on underwriting Phase II with special grants earmarked specifically for this project.

There will be an official ribbon cutting with the Claremont City Council and Chamber of Commerce on Monday, December 12 at 5:30 p.m. In 2017, admission will be $5.00 and free for museum members and children under age 18.

Claremont’s Rich Artistic Legacy
Art is an enduring part of Claremont’s history and heritage. Known throughout the country as an “art mecca” in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, Claremont remains an important center of artistic activity. Claremont artists are integral to the cultural fabric of the City, having contributed to its unique identity and personality for more than 70 years.
Centered by the Colleges, Claremont emerged as an important art community in the years following World War II. The recently produced film Design for Modern Living: Millard Sheets and the Claremont Art Community 1935-75 reinforced our awareness of the significance of our artistic heritage, a heritage worthy of preservation and presentation to future generations.

Claremont continues to have an active community of artists. Although many artists have homes and studios in neighboring towns, Claremont serves as a hub for area artists in large part because of the presence and reputation of the Claremont Colleges. In the tradition of their predecessors, local artists continue to impact the quality of the social and built environments.

Part of the charm of this town is to walk through the Village hearing talk of kiln firings or seeing the latest mural project emerge. Local galleries fill with visitors at the monthly Art Walk and the Colleges bring exhibitions, lectures and art events to our community. Art happens here.

About the Museum
The Claremont Museum of Art was created to celebrate our community’s rich artistic legacy and to promote the cultural vitality of the region. With high hopes, the museum was incorporated in 2004 and was located in the Packing House for two years.

Since 2010, the museum has successfully operated as a “museum without walls.” With over 300 members, the volunteer organization has continued to hold numerous events and programs and has presented ten exhibitions in borrowed spaces. The Padua Hills Art Fiesta has become a popular annual event and studio tours have opened dozens of artists’ studios to the public. Funds raised have supported Project ARTstART, a successful art education program now in its fifth year serving Claremont schools.

The museum currently holds a significant art collection in storage. With a new exhibition space, CMA hopes to expand the collection to truly represent and preserve the artistic legacy of Claremont.
 
Go to www.claremontmuseum.org for more information about the museum, its history and current programs.
 
Contact:
Catherine McIntosh, Board Secretary/Programs & Communications
cmcintosh1011@gmail.com, (909) 621-3200



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