When the Freer Gallery of Art opened to the public in 1923, the museum was so filled with the spirit of its founder, Charles Lang Freer, that one of his friends referred to the building as “Mr. Freer’s Autobiography.”
This “autobiography”—embellished over the last ninety years—is now getting a new enhancement. As we embrace the digital age, we have made our entire collection available online, and the physical building, too, is seeing changes. The Freer Gallery has closed its doors while the building undergoes necessary maintenance and the galleries are returned to a look closer to the founding vision of Charles Lang Freer and his architect Charles Platt. We are also upgrading the Meyer Auditorium to improve our ability for telecasting, as we intend to share our performances and lectures worldwide. At the same time, we are working to enhance the visitor experience so that the Freer becomes a museum for twenty-first-century audiences, while maintaining its nearly one hundred-year-old elegance and aesthetic.
We look forward to welcoming you back in 2017, as the “autobiography” turns a new page. In the meantime, please visit our exhibitions in the adjoining Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, and enjoy our renowned public programming in venues throughout the city.
—Julian Raby, the Dame Jillian Sackler Director of the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery and Freer Gallery of Art