Art Museums

The Cleveland Museum of Art Chooses Non-White Colors for Its Gallery Walls

I recently had a visit from a friend who is a native of Cleveland. We were spending the afternoon at The Metropolitan Museum. While viewing a gallery of early-20th century American paintings, my friend remarked how uniformly white the walls were throughout the Museum.  She said that The Cleveland Museum of Art had painted its gallery walls various colors, and that the colors made the art pop off the walls.  I told her that was hard for me to imagine because colored walls would influence the viewer’s experience of the colors in the works of art themselves.

Yesterday I opened The Cleveland Museum’s website to look for examples of their newly-painted walls.  To my surprise, the colors are lush and beautiful.  Here are some examples from a recent exhibition of Japanese and Korean Art.

See the entire exhibition here:

In the following article, Jeffrey Strean, the Museum’s director of design and architecture, discusses the processs of choosing the colors for the gallery walls.



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