Ponce's Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico
Located in Santurce in Puerto Rico, the Museum of Art is a non-profit organization whose mission is to make the visual art of Puerto Rico and the rest of the world available to the people of Puerto Rico so that they can draw knowledge and inspiration from these works, thereby enriching the lives of the Puerto Rican public. Also known as the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico (MAPR), the museum was inaugurated in July 2000. Since then the museum has managed to develop quite a large permanent collection of Puerto Rican art from the 16th century to the present. All these works are well researched and documented and often the exhibits include some form of interpretation of the masterpieces on display. The carefully selected artworks help to give insight into Puerto Rican art and they also give local artists access to visual art from other parts of the world.
The building itself is some 130 000 square feet in size. It is a modern building that makes use of large open spaces to display the artwork in the most complementary manner possible. However, not everything in the museum is modernistic. The west wing is a neoclassical structure that was designed by William H. Shimmelphening. The wing is one of thirteen buildings that once housed the Municipal Hospital, but the building was incorporated into the new museum as part of efforts to preserve this Puerto Rican architecture for the benefit and education of future generations. Today this wing is the main entrance to the museum and it features fourteen galleries which proudly display the museum's permanent collections. The newer wing of the museum was designed by Otto Reyes and Luis Gutiérrez. The museum is five floors high and features a theatre, two galleries, and a conservation department. It also has a number of interactive art displays and galleries where students and other art enthusiasts can get more involved with the art that surrounds them.
Other facilities include a restaurant, a shop and a garden. The garden features fifteen sculptures that were created by local artists and has a number of footpaths which will take you past a variety of different plant species. It also has a massive pond inhabited by Koi fish, three waterfalls, and a variety of birds. The MAPR makes use of the latest technology in order to control temperature, lighting and security so as to ensure that the art properly looked after. So visit the Museum of Art of Puerto Rico to experience this brilliant art facility for yourself.