Dartmouth’s Hood Museum 2.0

2019 expansion of the Hood Art Museum, Dartmouth College
Hood Art Museum at Dartmouth.
Thank you, Charlie Hood ’51

Dartmouth College…Founded in 1767.

Vintage postcard of Dartmouth Hall at Dartmouth College.

Lots of Big Green blood runs in our family. Starting with my father and gallery founder Joe Caldwell (Class of 1951), myself (’85) and my younger sister (’89). Charlie Hood, of Hood Dairy distinction, was a friend and classmate of Joe’s…and he donated the original Hood Museum of Art which opened Fall 1985. Here’s a pic of what I’ll call Hood 1.0…

Image of the original Hood Museum at Dartmouth College in 1985.

There was some debate in 2016 when a major ($50,000,000) expansion and renovation of the Hood Museum was announced.  Architect Charles Moore’s widely acclaimed 1985 building was struggling to meet the expanded 21st century exhibition, collection, curatorial and educational needs of the college. The new Billie Tsien and Tod Williams design swallowed the original Hood museum nearly whole, although inside seven of the original exhibition spaces were incorporated. The controversy regarding the major renovation and expansion (what I think of as “Hood 2.0”) has died down now that the new building is up and running. The general consensus from the Dartmouth “family” is that the revised museum is functioning brilliantly within the mandates given for the much needed expansion. The public seems equally impressed.

2019 renovation of the Hood Art Museum, Dartmouth College.
Hood Museum “2.0” main entry.

I had a chance to visit the newly opened museum in March of 2019, and received a lovely tour (despite the museum being closed on Mondays) from Bonnie MacAdam, curator of American Art, who kindly walked me through the exhibition spaces. I was duly impressed, and enjoyed seeing some “old friends” by the likes of Frederic Remington, Paul Sample (Dartmouth ’20), Winslow Homer, Georgia O’Keeffe, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, James McNeill Whistler, Thomas Sully, Augusta Savage, and Jackson Pollock, to name a few. I also got a peek at the exceptional en-suite classroom, library, media, and research spaces, which previously existed across campus. The behind the scenes storage and exhibition logistics component is also equally as impressive, and was much needed.

It’s always great to get back to my old stomping grounds, “The College on the Hill”, and connect with the past and present. It’s pretty much guaranteed I’ll always bleed Green…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s