They’re going strong!
The Brooklyn Academy of Music will create a new space dedicated to visual art this October, alongside its collection of film and performance venues, the arts group announced last week. A new structure on Fulton Street, dubbed BAM Strong, will house both a ground-floor gallery and a second-floor sculpture terrace. The construction is part of a $38 million project that will also renovate the 115-year-old BAM Harvey Theater next door to make it more accessible, according to the Academy’s chief.
“This project provides our campus with dynamic improvements and additions while greatly increasing accessibility for all our visitors,” said BAM president Katy Clark.
Renovations to the Harvey space include adding an elevator to its balcony level, wider stairs, and a larger lobby with service kiosks instead of a narrow box office window. The second floor of the theater will also feature a new patron lounge, with a floor-to-ceiling semi-circular window looking over Fulton Street.
The new Rudin Family Gallery, curated by BAM’s new artistic director David Binder, will open in time for the organization’s annual Next Wave Festival of new art. The terrace atop the new gallery will host a public art installation, which will be announced later this year, according to a press release.
The visual arts space will also connect the Harvey Theater to the ground floor of the residential building at the corner of Fulton Street and Ashland Place, which the organization bought in 2010. An undulating lighted canopy will connect the three spaces along Fulton Street.
The organization’s managers are still considering what they will do with the ground floor space at Ashland Place.
“Possible uses and operators of that property are currently under consideration,” a press statement read.
The new venture will give the Academy a chance to try new things, adding to the neighborhood’s art offerings and make them more accessible and affordable, another leader of the arts institution said.
“We are thrilled that the project will provide our always adventurous institution with new opportunities — from visual art programming, to easier access to affordable seats, to new spaces for our audiences to gather,” said BAM board chair Adam Max. “Having our Fulton Street spaces united under one canopy also reflects the evolution of BAM and the growing Brooklyn cultural district.”