When living in one of the most expensive cities in the country, it’s helpful to know the places in New York City that offer discounts and freebies. Thankfully, many of the Big Apple’s world-class museums and galleries offer free admission on some days, from the one-bedroom-sized Mmuseumm in Chinatown to architectural-icon the Guggenheim Museum. Ahead, we’ve rounded up all of the free museum days in NYC to let you pinch pennies and get your culture fix at the same time.
The Frick Collection
The Met Breuer. Image courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum.
It was announced Friday that the Met Museum would lease the Breuer building to the Frick, the New York Times reports. According to an agreement between the two venerable art institutions, the Metropolitan Museum of Art will likely sign the Met Breuer on Madison Avenue over to the Frick Collection beginning in 2020. Doing so would allow the in-debt Met to free itself of the last three years of an eight-year lease and an $18 million annual expense and enable it to put funds toward improving the modern and contemporary galleries at its Fifth Avenue flagship. Likewise, the Frick would have a suitable temporary home while the Gilded Age mansion that it inhabits is being renovated.
On Tuesday the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission approved the most recent plan submitted by the museum for the expansion and renovation of the 1914 Gilded Age mansion it calls home in a 6 to 1 vote with one abstention, the New York Times reports. Three prior attempts by the museum in a quest to gain more space for exhibitions and programs were turned back amid vocal protests by neighborhood advocates and preservationists. The revised plan submitted by the project’s architects Beyer Blinder Belle and Annabelle Selldorf includes the decision to restore the museum’s original gated garden, which had been a point of controversy with those opposed to the project.
The planned expansion of the Frick Collection is delayed again after the Landmarks Preservation Commission decided Tuesday to not vote on the project, following hours of public testimony. Dozens of neighborhood advocates, preservationists and museum goers attended the hearing to discuss the Beyer Blinder Belle and Selldorf Architects-designed expansion, which would include 60,000 square feet of repurposed space and 27,000 square feet of new construction.
The plan would expand the existing Upper East Side building’s second level, add two set-back stories above the music room and an addition behind the Frick Art Reference Library. According to Curbed NY, critics of the expansion said the additions would be too large and block the design of the existing library. Despite a presentation from head architect Annabelle Selldorf, no decision was made about whether to grant the $160 million project its certificate of appropriateness.
The Frick Collection has unveiled its $160 million Selldorf Architects-designed upgrade and expansion, which will open up the private living quarters of Henry Clay Frick’s original 1914 home to the public for the first time. As the New York Times explained, the renderings illustrate a plan to expand the existing building’s second level, add two set-back stories above the music room, and an addition behind the library that will match its seven-story height. These will house a 220-seat underground auditorium, an education center with classrooms, in addition to a renovated lobby and larger museum shop.
The Frick Collection just announced their plans for expansion last week and today they’ve unveiled renderings. The construction, designed by Davis Brody Bond architectural firm – the same firm responsible for the interiors in the 9/11 Museum – plans to expand the space by 60,000 square feet, connecting their Upper East Side mansion with the museum’s art reference library.