The Guild Hall in East Hampton, a historic artist-driven institution that holds a collection championing the work of artists associated with the Hamptons and the east end of Long Island such as Lee Krasner and Jackson Pollock, will undergo a transformative $25m campus-wide renovation due to be completed in 2023.
The renovation will allow the institution to become “a canvas for interdisciplinary works”, according to its director, Andrea Grover. “We want to consider how we can create an adaptable, responsive environment for living artists, while being mindful that Guild Hall has this incredible historic importance to East Hampton.”
The Manhattan-based architecture firms Peter Pennoyer Architects and Hollander Design Landscape Architects, and the design firm Applied Minds, will oversee the project. Each brings “great reverence for the history of the institution and admiration for Aymar Embury II, the original Guild Hall architect”, Grover says.
While the footprint of the campus will remain the same, planned improvements include the construction of an art handling space; updated HVAC, lighting and sound systems in the theater and throughout the institution; a more “park-like environment” on the campus; and the remodeling of the nearly century-old museum building.
The museum remodeling aims to increase the flexibility and flow of the galleries, and will include removing aesthetically cumbersome features that were added over the years, like aluminum doors installed at the entrance of the space and a partition that currently covers laylights original to the architecture.
The goal is to create a “friendlier, more inviting experience, bringing natural light into the galleries and creating a more gracious entrance that will also allow us to accommodate larger works in the galleries, like installation-based works or forms of architectural intervention”, Grover says.
Guild Hall was founded by the American philanthropist Lorenzo E. Woodhouse in 1931 and holds a collection spanning nearly 2,400 artworks, with a focus since the 1960s on artists who have lived and worked in the region, including Thomas Moran, Childe Hassam, James Brooks, Frank Stella, Cindy Sherman and others.