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Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum expands and transforms

Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum of Cal State Long Beach is currently undergoing an exciting expansion and renovation, which will add roughly 4,000 square feet to the completely redesigned site. The expanded Museum, scheduled to re-open in February 2022, will have a new interior floorplan and a footprint of roughly 11,000 square feet. Private and public events to be announced will celebrate the new Museum and its potential to positively impact visitors in early 2022.

Museum leadership works with Pfeiffer Partner Architects and Clark Construction Group to upgrade the Museum with more accessibility, functionality and beauty to behold. The expanded complex includes many new spaces; within the interior — new exhibition galleries, an education laboratory, a reading and archives room, visitor lobby and event center, retail space, and a works on paper study room; within the exterior — new outdoor gathering spaces, two new gardens stewarded by the Museum and adjacent Horn Center, and the refreshed and renamed Patron’s Plaza; all new and renovated spaces offer improved opportunities for visitors to engage with art — and all areas will better serve our communities.

This institutional transformation is a significant moment for local communities who will soon benefit from cutting-edge facilities improvements, a deepened capacity to serve and host a wider array of visitors, and broadened exhibitions, collections, and education programs to be offered in new indoor and outdoor spaces. Museum Director Paul Baker Prindle emphasizes, “Expanded, professional-grade galleries will host several different exhibitions at a time and allow the Museum to deepen its leadership in the exploration of abstraction. A community gallery and feature gallery offer greater capacity to support the developing careers of regional artists including self-taught, emerging, and recently graduated artists. Improved research and learning spaces will improve the Museum’s ability to focus on advancing multidisciplinary research and arts integrated learning strategies.”

Cal State Long Beach President Jane Close Conoley praised the new Museum as the “crown jewel of [CSULB] campus” in her recent column. She emphasized: “This facility presents fresh opportunities for Beach faculty, staff and students, and it also promises to be an even more accessible campus space for the Long Beach community. The new version—the only CSU museum with a collection like ours and the first to be accredited by the American Alliance of Museums in the CSU System—will continue to offer free admission, as well as evening and weekend hours. This means that families, workers, students and others throughout our community can experience exceptional art.” She continued, “Making Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum available to the community adds to our mission to promote ‘the public good.’ Increased availability also represents our commitment to develop the next generation of artists and appreciators of the arts.”

The construction also upgrades the Museum to a LEED Silver building sustainability rating. Mark Zakhour, Director, Design and Construction Services, California State University, Long Beach shares, “The new LEED Silver Certified Museum is being built as a living laboratory for cultural exploration and a showcase of the campus’s aggressive sustainability commitment. Intentional selection of native plants in landscaping, use of sustainable and local building materials, integration of solar panels, energy efficient design, green cleaning and maintenance plans and investment in long-lasting learning technologies were key aspects of the build that contributed to the sustainability rating.”

Pfeiffer Partners Architects shared the impacts of the renovation, stating that, “expanded gallery space and a new entry zone will create a stronger interface between the Museum, students, and broader community, while improving operational flexibility, museum security, and access to the Museum’s [collection resources], prints and archives. The new Museum Lobby, along with its stronger connections to the outdoor plaza, also provides an array of indoor/outdoor opportunities for art exhibition and Museum events.”

Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum thanks benefactress, Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld, for her generous donation that made our Museum expansion possible. The gift also funds ongoing student scholarships and educational programming. Additional support from Pasadena Art Alliance, Constance W. Glenn Endowment patrons, and Ruth DeYoung Kohler Foundation has further fueled organizational growth.

This article was released by the Carolyn Campagna Kleefeld Contemporary Art Museum.