and Historic Value
The Housatonic Museum of Art (HMA) is premier college art museum with a permanent collection on continuous display in its 300,000 square foot facility.
The collection, which spans ancient to contemporary art, is not only a resource for students at Housatonic Community College (the museum is located on-campus), but also for the community of Bridgeport and the region.
Part of HMA’s mission, in addition to the enhancement of cultural life college students and art enthusiasts, is to further the education of our youth. The Museum’s Peer Docent Program provides supplemental arts education to Bridgeport schools. Students use object-based inquiry and have opportunities to discuss ideas about art.
As with so many other arts institutions, behind the objects displayed on walls and in cases, there lies the great work of museum staff. Managing the details of dynamic, informative, educational spaces is a massive undertaking–regardless the size of the museum or the scope of its collection.
HMA hired Integral Storage Solutions to design and install shelving and mobile racking systems for its diverse and growing collection.
Over 4,000 works of art are available for display throughout the college campus and within the museum’s Burt Chernow Galleries. But the display of the permanent collection must be balanced with the robust programming of the museum, which includes changing exhibitions every 6 weeks featuring national, regional and local artists as well as the annual faculty and student art shows.
Integral Storage Solutions evaluated the specific storage and preservation needs of HMA and its collection, which includes portraits, landscapes, still-lifes, folk art and sculpture by such notable artists as Renoir, Matisse, Picasso, Miro, Chagall, Rodin, Avery, de Chirico, Christo, Klimt, and Rauschenburg.
For one part of the project in particular, Integral Storage Solutions devised a unique way of solving a common issue.
HMA’s existing beige museum cabinets are a commonly used solution for protecting valuable objects. But, the space above the cabinets was lost for storage purposes.
In order to regain storage space for smaller framed art and objects, Integral Storage Solutions designed custom width and depth shelving. We matched the dimensions of the existing museum cabinets so they fit within the new storage shelving, allowing the museum to reclaim valuable overhead wall storage space.
This is a rare steel shelving storage solution, especially in a retrofit situation, since most companies are limited to industry standard sizes and have to convince their clients to work around their manufacturing capabilities, rather than catering their solutions to their clients specific needs.
–Jeff DiCicco, Principal, Integral Storage Solutions
Additionally, Integral Storage Solutions installed Montel’s Art Rack Storage Panel, a pull-out storage system that is ceiling-suspended.
This product gives The Housatonic Museum of Art a number of advantages:
- optimized use of your space,
- Easy access to stored art works,
- Accommodate works of varying sizes and weights,
- fixed tracks ensure smooth motion and dampened vibrations.
With easier access and storage solutions that minimize the risk of damage to expensive art works, The Housatonic Museum of Art made a wise investment that solved their storage challenges, but will save costly repairs in the long run.
Learn more about The Housatonic Museum of Art on their website.