The Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement in St. Petersburg opens on September 7


ST. PETERSBURG – The highly anticipated Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement has announced its opening to the public on September 7.

It is the world’s first museum dedicated to the movement, which occurred between around 1890 and 1930 and revived and elevated craftsmanship following the Industrial Revolution.

Founded by Rudy Ciccarello, businessman, philanthropist and local collector, the museum displays more than 800 works from its permanent collection and that of the Two Red Roses Foundation, of which Ciccarello is the president and founder. The Two Red Roses Foundation collections exceed 2,000 objects personally collected by Ciccarello and are considered the most important private collection of the American arts and crafts movement in the world.

“This museum will be the epicenter for the study of the American arts and crafts movement,” Ciccarello said in a statement. “Our mission is to preserve and share these beautiful works of art with the public and to teach future generations to appreciate honest craftsmanship and design.”

The museum was designed by Tampa-based architect Alberto Alfonso in close collaboration with Ciccarello, with the principles of the movement. The five-story, 137,000-square-foot museum features a grand atrium, skylights, and a spiral staircase, crafted with handcrafted finishes in Venetian plaster, wood, metal, and stone. An outdoor garden features period tiles and fountains.

Furniture, pottery, tiles, ironwork, lighting, lead glass, woodcuts, paintings and photographs by leading artists, artisans and companies of the movement (including Gustav Stickley, Tiffany Studios and Frank Lloyd Wright) are presented in 40,000 square feet of ‘gallery space.

Amenities include a paneled room by Architects Greene and Greene, a fully tiled bathroom and boathouse floor by Grueby Faience and Tile Company, and a 600-tile mural by Rookwood Pottery.

Three galleries will present temporary exhibitions, two of which will be presented at the opening of the museum: “Love, Labor, and Art: The Roycroft Enterprise” will present more than 75 works by the Roycroft community, and “Lenses Embracing the Beautiful: Pictorial Photographs of the Two Red Roses Foundation ”will present more than 150 pictorial photographs.

The museum also has an educational studio, a graphics studio, a research library and a theater. On the first Saturday of each month, the Education Studio will organize MAACM Family Days for artistic creation, performances and family gallery tours. The third Thursday programming includes themed activities and demonstrations, while the monthly Sunday film series features films inspired by the collection or exhibits, followed by a guided tour.

The museum shop offers handcrafted gifts and jewelry and runs the entire length of the museum’s ground floor. Also on this floor is the Arts Café, where guests can grab lunch dishes, snacks, coffee, and drinks while the museum is open during the day.

Ambrosia, the destination restaurant, is decorated with movement-era furniture and artwork, including a tiled fireplace.

Event space is available for hire and includes an 18-foot Brunswick Mont Oro bar from 1900, antique facades and hand-crafted pub tables.

If you are going to

The Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement opens on September 7. $ 25; $ 23 for seniors, $ 20 for active firefighters and military police; $ 10 for ages 6-17, free for ages 5 and under. Memberships are available. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday-Wednesday and Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. 355 Fourth Street N. 727-440-4859.


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