MoMA Closing for Four Months Ahead of $400 Million Renovation

New York's esteemed Museum of Modern Art will be closing its doors for five months starting this summer, as the institution undergoes a $400 million makeover. The main building on West 53rd Street will close completely from June 15th to October 21, 2019, though MoMA PS1 in Queens will remain open for the duration.

MoMA Museum of Modern Art
The Museum of Modern Art’s main building, on West 53rd Street, in New York, will close completely from June 15th to October 21, 2019, though MoMA PS1, in Queens, will remain open for the duration. MoMA

The expansion, which will add more than 40,000 square feet of gallery space, is being developed with architects Diller Scofidio + Renfro to allow the museum to exhibit more art in original ways, across media and disciplines. MoMA director Glenn Lowry told The New York Times the renovation reflects a seismic shift in how "the story of modern and contemporary art is presented" at the 89-year-old institution, with a renewed focus on women, minority and international artists.

It will also enable the museum to rotate art in its galleries every six to nine months, allowing overlooked holdings to get their due.

Related: Largest Frida Kahlo Exhibit in 10 Years Opening at Brooklyn Museum.

"A new generation of curators is discovering the richness of what is in our collection, and there is great work being made around the world that we need to pay attention to," said Lowry. "It means that the usual gets supplanted now by the unexpected."

A central "studio" space will feature live programming and performances "that react to, question, and challenge histories of modern art and the current cultural moment," according to a statement from the Museum. The renovation, which sees MoMa taking over the space once occupied by the American Folk Art Museum and the adjacent new skyscraper designed by architect Jean Nouvel, will also add a second-floor education space and free street-level galleries.

MoMA Museum of Modern Art
The new gallery spaces are seen through this north-south section-perspective, looking east, along West 53rd Street, at The Museum of Modern Art. Diller Scofidio + Renfro

When MoMA reopens in October, it will exhibit a survey of Latin artists as well as exhibitions dedicated to African-American artists Betye Saar and Pope.L, all drawn from its permanent collections. It will also inaugurate a new partnership this fall: The Studio Museum in Harlem will exhibit at MoMa while its own new building is being constructed.

Related: Inside the Stunning Christian Dior Exhibit at London's Victoria & Albert Museum.

MoMa previously closed for renovations for two years in 2004, during which time major holdings were moved to Queens.

Where to see modern art in New York while MoMA is closed?