Now that San Joaquin County has entered the "red" tier, The Haggin Museum is once again open for visitors at 25% capacity. As you'll see, there are a lot of reasons to rediscover this Stockton gem.
The Haggin Museum is one of Stockton’s oldest attractions and the most popular thing to do in town, according to Tripadvisor. Open since 1931, the museum recently completed a $2.5 million face lift that has transformed their galleries and the visitor experience.
The stunning new spaces, designed by internationally recognized design firm Gallagher & Associates, display the Museum’s collection of late 19th to early 20th century American and European fine art. These collections are comprised of works by Albert Bierstadt, William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, and more. A newly created, permanent gallery dedicated to 20th-century illustrator J.C. Leyendecker includes a rare, in-depth look into his personal life with over 30 original pieces of artwork by the artist - the largest museum owned collection on display in the world.
Here are four fun facts to acquaint you to the new museum fine art galleries:
Often collected by celebrities such as George Lucas and Steven Speilberg, J.C. Leyendecker (1874-1951) was arguably one of America’s most popular commercial artists of the early 20th century. Leyendecker completed 322 illustrations for the Saturday Evening Post and countless others for magazines such as The American Weekly, Success, and Collier’s. Not only did the artist work for magazines, he also created some of the most successful advertising campaigns in American history, including one for Kellogg’s cereal. J.C. Leyendecker was a mentor to Norman Rockwell, who of course, is most well-known for his Saturday Evening Post covers. The new Leyendecker gallery, situated on the arcade level of the museum, has more than 30 pieces of original artwork from sketches to completed paintings giving an inclusive look into his process. Visitors can also enjoy an intimate look into Leyendecker’s life with photographs, letters, and other personal items. This gallery will surely become a museum favorite.
The painting, one of many Bierstadt’s works on display in the Haggin’s new American Art Gallery, is titled "Looking Up Yosemite Valley." The piece was loaned to the White House and hung in the Roosevelt Room during Reagan’s first term. It is said to have reminded the President of his home state of California. Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902) is just one of many artists found in the American Art Gallery, which is separated into three major sections: View Masters, artists merging the European styles with American subject matter; The Hudson River School, trained artists exploring the undiscovered wilderness of the East Coast; and Individualism, an artistic response to the social issues in America. As a whole, this collection of landscapes reflects the Haggin’s immersion in the American culture.
The Haggin’s European art collection fills the Haggin and McKee Galleries inside the museum, highlighting the many facets of the glittering world of Europe in the late 19th century. This collection contains a wide array of subject matter such as cityscapes, animal paintings, and even fantasy. The collection ranges from the more conservative, classical styles, to the innovative and experimental works.
It goes without saying that a museum renovation is only as good as the design firm that leads the project. Gallagher & Associates is an internationally recognized Museum Planning and Design Firm with offices in Washington D.C., New York, San Francisco, and Singapore, designed the new galleries at the Haggin Museum. Gallagher & Associates has worked on museum projects such as The National World War II Museum, The National Museum of American Jewish History, The National Archives Museum, The College Football Hall of Fame, The Grammy Museum, and many more. When visiting the galleries, visitors will immediately understand why Stockton is proud of the work Gallagher & Associated accomplished to make our museum shine.
TIP: Be sure to stop by the Haggin Museum store before you leave. It is a great place to grab a unique gift, or to find books related to the Haggin’s collection and artists.
Have a question about the Haggin Museum? You can text us 7 days a week, 8am to 8pm at (877) 778-6258 and you’ll receive a live response from a member of our team. Stay social with Visit Stockton on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
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