The Contemporary Arts Center's mission is rooted in the belief that there is an intimate link between art and life and that connections are made through contemporary art. Since 1939, the CAC—one of the nation's oldest and most celebrated contemporary … show more
The Contemporary Arts Center's mission is rooted in the belief that there is an intimate link between art and life and that connections are made through contemporary art. Since 1939, the CAC—one of the nation's oldest and most celebrated contemporary art institutions—has been a steadfast facilitator for that connection, and a conduit for innovation. It remains today an open hub for creative inspiration, art celebration, and intellectual stimulation—a place to be inspired by new ideas and where art connects people to each other and to the world outside.
At the cutting edge of contemporary art for decades, the CAC is known around the world for the creative freedom and support it gives to artists, the access and opportunities it provides to the public and the space it creates for cross-generational and cross-societal dialogue around contemporary issues.
The CAC has a long and rich history. In 1940 it was one of the first venues in the United States to exhibit Picasso's Guernica, it presented one of the first museum exhibitions of Pop art—with works by future icons such as Jim Dine, Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol; one of the first major exhibitions of the famed sculptor, Dale Chihuly; and the first museum survey to spotlight the underground, DIY, street art movement with Beautiful Losers. It has hosted lectures and performances by future luminaries such as Buckminster Fuller, Margaret Meade, Maya Angelou and David Byrne; commissioned valued public art installations; and furthered public discourse over contemporary art.
It's current home, the Lois and Richard Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art, opened in 2003. It was the first U.S. art museum designed by a woman, London-based Zaha Hadid. Called ""the most important American building to be completed since the end of the cold war” by the New York Times, the design won Hadid the prestigious Pritzker Prize.