Welcome to the ISG
The Gardner is truly, unlike most traditional museums or house collections.
This venetian-style building houses a wholly unique, and never ending, array of paintings, trinkets, and sculptures, juxtaposing time periods and continents with both famous and less-known artisans.
Isabella Stewart Gardner began collecting art at a young age, and her $2 million inheritance provided her the financial backing to expand her gallery.
Not only is her collection incredible for the amazing books, prints, paintings, sculptures — she personally curated each room and joined in on the physical construction of the building itself.
The collection could live in a plain taupe-colored gallery and still blow you away, but the house and knowledge that you’re exploring the same halls that famous partiers and Isabella walked add that indescribable extra ounce of magic.
In 2002, architect Renzo Piano began envisioning on the New Wing of the Gardner.
This expansion, added necessary space for a cafe, museum shop, staff offices, and new exhibition galleries without overcrowding the Palazzo itself.
Gardner’s will stipulations on moving any of the artwork or altering her curation border on intractable, making it incredibly difficult for the museum to renovate or make alterations.
Now, the New Wing’s exhibition space enables the museum to juxtapose Old World with contemporary artists, or showcase a particular work from the collection and expose visitors to comparable artworks.
I promise, there’s something here for everyone.
You may think this museum is stuck in the past, but imagine this when you take in the unfathomable breadth of the collection — this was someone’s house. (A someone who quite enjoyed partying.)
After you visit try telling me that you didn't like, I promise you'll love it!