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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The MFA Makes History While Saving It

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston is a place that everyone around the area has been to at least once. In fact, since opening in 1876 the museum has had nearly 70 million visitors from all over the world. But did you know that when it was founded in 1876, it was originally in Copley in the Back Bay? It moved to its current location on Huntington Ave. in 1909. The Museum of Fine Arts has recently reopened its Fenway entrance, and has closed down the Huntington Ave entrance to continue renovations on that part of the museum. In the Lower Hemicycle is a display on the history of the museum from its founding to its current activities in the community.

The exhibit features rarely seen documents, photos, and even terracotta tiles from the original, and long since demolished, building in Copley. The Museum was founded in 1870 and opened in its Copley location in 1876. General Charles Greely Loring was appointed the first curator of the museum in 1876 and was also in charge of the administration. In 1887, his title was changed to Director and he served until he died in 1902-he was the longest serving director of the MFA.

A series of paintings, some of which are included in this exhibit, by artist Enrico Meneghelli as a study of the galleries at the original location give viewers an idea of what the inside of the Copley location looked like. When the museum was moved to its current locality in 1909, all of the 5000-plus pieces were moved to Huntington Ave on two horse- drawn carts. The Copley location was demolished in 1912 and replaced by Copley Plaza Hotel.

With the recent acquisition of the Forsyth Building, the Museum of Fine Arts campus now encompasses more then 2,100 feet along Boston’s Emerald Necklace. The new expansion currently under construction will increase the size of the current MFA building by 28% and include a new wing for the Arts of the America’s galleries and major renovations to the European galleries.

The Museum is a 138-year-old institution in the heart of Boston dedicated to the preservation and exhibition of great works of art. There have been controversies involving countries demanding the returns of works of art acquired in that past and much press about the museum over the years. With the opening of the new Fenway State Street Corporation Entrance comes the opening of a new visitors center and the reopening of several galleries. UMass Boston students get into the MFA for free with their student ID, as UMB is a Member Institution of the museum. With that being said, there is really no reason not to take a trip to the MFA and take a look at what’s new, while familiarizing yourself with and appreciating its rich and beautiful history.