Saturday, March 08, 2008
Free Asian Sundays
Most art museums in San Francisco are subsidized by the local government, but they still charge local citizens quite a bit for entrance if you don't have an annual membership.
The Fine Arts Museums (the deYoung and the Legion of Honor) offer free admission on the first Tuesday of each month, but usually charge the unwashed masses a surcharge for entrance into any "special" exhibit.
The Asian Art Museum has also been offering free Tuesday admissions on the first of the month, through a sponsorship grant from Target stores, but they never bother with a surcharge for traveling exhibits, which is nice. Also, in a move that feels truly populist, they are changing their free day from first Tuesdays to the first Sunday of each month, starting in May (the 4th, to be exact).
This will allow working families to finally attend something together for free in San Francisco, which is a rare ocurrence. The other museums in town should take a look and follow suit.
The coolest detail about the Asian Art Museum is that the collection is both so extensive and so light-sensitive that rotating the artworks every six months makes the museum feel constantly fresh. Currently, many of the best works which opened the Civic Center location five years ago are back on view.
And do check out the special jade exhibit between the Korean and Chinese wings on the second floor. It's amazing.