Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Photo: David Heald © Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, New York.

Education facilities to be named Gail May Engelberg Center for Arts Education and a formal dedication and naming ceremony will take place November 1, 2022.

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum announces that Gail and Alfred Engelberg and the Engelberg Foundation have committed $15 million to endow the museum’s arts education programs.

Gail May Engelberg is a member of the Guggenheim’s Board of Trustees and the Chair of the Education Committee of the Guggenheim Foundation. She has been a major supporter and advocate for arts education at the Guggenheim for a quarter of a century and previously endowed the position of Deputy Director of Education.

In recognition of this new gift, the Guggenheim Museum’s education space will be named the Gail May Engelberg Center for Arts Education. The 8,200-square-foot center includes classrooms, studio art spaces, and a theater and furthers the Guggenheim’s mission of offering learning opportunities for community members, museum visitors, and students to build engagement with and connection to the arts and each other.

Richard Armstrong, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, commented, “We are honored that the Guggenheim’s education center will bear the name of Gail May Engelberg, who has been one of the most ardent leaders of arts education at the Guggenheim for the last 25 years. Gail’s support and advocacy are truly exemplary and have enabled the Guggenheim to create dynamic and meaningful programming.”

“My parents taught me the importance of the arts and arts education when I was a young girl and brought me to New York to visit the Guggenheim,” Engelberg said. “The arts have been an essential part of my life ever since. It is an honor to support the work of this great museum in providing educational opportunities that I know will enrich the lives of children, students, and families for generations to come.”

About the Guggenheim’s Education and Public Programs

The Guggenheim’s programs offer learners opportunities to have lifelong relationships with art, museums, and their own creative potential. Through collaboration with artists, scholars, and cultural leaders, the education center creates innovative and inclusive learning opportunities for diverse museum visitors across all age groups. The Guggenheim is dedicated to providing a space for exchange, creative thinking, and co-creation.

School, Youth, and Family programs include educator workshops, Gugg Teens, free visits for all NYC public schools, as well as Learning Through Art, an artist-in-residency school partnership that has served over 150,000 students in all New York City boroughs since 1970.

Academic Engagement initiatives bring a diverse and international cohort of undergraduate and graduate students and faculty together. Two paid programs, including the Internship Program and the Summer College Workshop, and academic partnerships with leading institutions such as New York University, the City University of New York, Rutgers University, and Columbia University provide experiential learning, encourage student experimentation, and support curricular goals.

Public Programs and Engagement encompass endowed lectures, conversation series, performances and commissions, yearlong residencies, architecture-focused programs, and dynamic virtual offerings, all of which promote exchange with artists, thought leaders, and visionaries. The inaugural Poet-in-Residence program was launched in 2021 in a collaborative partnership with the Academy of American Poets.

Interpretation and Access programs include ongoing initiatives such as Mind’s Eye for participants who are blind or have low vision, as well as partnerships with organizations to provide individualized group tours and ASL interpreters for public programs. The new interactive poetry space in the Aye Simon Reading Room has served over 50,000 visitors since it opened in late 2021.

About Gail May Engelberg

In addition to her service at the Guggenheim, Gail May Engelberg is Vice Chair of the Board of Jazz at Lincoln Center, where she has also been a leader in education, and a trustee of The Engelberg Foundation, a family foundation that provides grants for healthcare, education, and social service projects. She has also served on the Board of New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts and as Secretary of the Board of the Aspen Music Festival and School. Engelberg received her BA in fine arts from Colorado Women’s College, Denver, and cofounded Gammel, Ollendick & May (1974–85), a firm specializing in the purchase and removal of abandoned railroad lines and the recycling of railroad ties, rail, and scrap steel throughout the western United States. Engelberg is a native of New Orleans; she and her husband, Alfred Engelberg, a retired intellectual property lawyer, reside in Palm Beach, Florida.

About the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation

The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation was established in 1937 and is dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of modern and contemporary art through exhibitions, education programs, research initiatives, and publications. The international constellation of museums includes the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice; the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao; and the future Guggenheim Abu Dhabi. An architectural icon and “temple of spirit” where radical art and architecture meet, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is now among a group of eight Frank Lloyd Wright structures in the United States recently designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site. To learn more about the museum and the Guggenheim’s activities around the world, visit guggenheim.org.

Visitor Information

Admission: Adults $25, students/seniors (65+) $18, members and children under 12 free. Open Sunday, Monday, and Wednesday through Friday, 11 am to 6 pm, and Saturday, 11 am to 8 pm. Closed Tuesday. Members-only on select Mondays, 6 pm to 8 pm. Pay What You Wish hours are Saturdays, 6 pm to 8 pm. Purchase of timed tickets is encouraged ahead of visit. Explore the Guggenheim with our free Digital Guide, a part of the Bloomberg Connects app. Find it in the Apple App Store or in the Google Play Store.

The Guggenheim Museum has taken COVID-19 safety measures to reduce the risk of exposure to visitors and staff. Masks are required regardless of vaccination status.