Museum InfoMedia Room

DIA exterior at night
DIA exterior at night


Monday, March 12, 2007


Public opening of newly renovated museum preceded by
Exclusive First-Look Fundraising Gala Saturday, November 10

March 12, 2007 (DETROIT)—The long-anticipated opening of the newly expanded and  renovated Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), with completely re-organized galleries will be unveiled to the public on Friday, Nov. 23. This marks the end of a six-year, $158.2 million building and gallery reinstallation project that entailed rethinking how the museum presents its world-class collection to the public. More than a week of exciting events to celebrate the new DIA kicks off on Nov. 10 with an exclusive first-look black tie gala.

To complete the final phase of the project, which includes reinstalling over 6000 works of art in redesigned galleries, the DIA will close beginning Monday, May 28, the day after the Ansel Adams exhibition ends. The museum will offer special activities throughout the summer, including a film and music festival organized by the DIA’s Detroit Film Theatre, presented by JPMorgan Chase. More details about these events will be announced in the coming weeks. 

When the museum officially opens to the public at 10 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 23, the day after Thanksgiving, it will remain open around-the-clock until 9 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 24. The 35-hour block of public hours will help accommodate the large crowds that are expected.

“The grand reopening of the Detroit Institute of Arts will be ‘the event’ in Detroit in 2007 and we are inviting everyone to join us for the festivities, share the pride in Detroit’s own national treasure, and experience their new DIA,” said Graham W. J. Beal, DIA director. “After six-years of hard work, we are nearing the finish line and we know the public will experience a museum that is much more visitor-centered, and will better engage them with one of the finest art collections in the nation.”

The museum has mostly remained open during the construction and renovation project. “For a museum of the DIA’s size and stature to offer a full schedule of programs and exhibitions during such a massive renovation project is unprecedented,” said Beal. “We made the decision early on to remain open for as long as we could in order to serve the public. It has been challenging, but well worth the effort.”

The DIA’s building renovation began with the need to make upgrades to the museum’s infrastructure and improve navigation throughout the museum. However, because construction would necessitate emptying all the galleries, then putting the art back when finished, the project also presented the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rethink how the DIA presents its collection to the public. As a result, visitors will find many more ways to make personal connections with the art, as it will be presented in its historical, social, political or spiritual context, with improved labels, hands-on activities, and some high-tech “interpretive” devices.

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Located in the heart of Detroit’s Cultural Center, the Detroit Institute of Arts was founded in 1885 and is recognized as one of the country’s premier art museums. The museum’s approximately 60,000 works of art comprise a multicultural survey of human creativity from prehistory through the 21st century. From the first van Gogh to enter a U.S. museum (Self-Portrait, 1887), to Diego Rivera’s world-renowned Detroit Industry murals, the DIA’s collection reveals the scope and depth of human experience, imagination, and emotion.

Museum hours are 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 10 a.m.–9 p.m. Fridays, and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Admission is a donation. We recommend $6 for adults and $3 for children. DIA members are admitted free. Programs are made possible with support from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the City of Detroit.

Media Contacts                     Pamela Marcil  313-833-7899
                                              Brendy Barr    248-651-4858