Delicious & Delovely: The Dramatically New deYoung Museum, SF

For world-class museums, my home town of San Francisco has an embarrassment of riches. I’ve long loved the SF Museum of Modern Art and the recently rebuilt Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.

Now, they’re joined by the totally revitalized, copper-clad M.H. de Young Museum, which reopened in the heart of Golden Gate Park in mid-October.

Avant-garde Swiss designers — Pierre de Meuron and Jacques Herzog — who also created the new wing of the Walker Art Museum in Minneapolis, designed the new deYoung. Founded in 1895, the structure was damaged beyond repair in the 1989 Loma Prieta Earthquake and had to be rebuilt, rather than retrofitted, to withstand further temblors.

The twisted, nine-story high tower and staircase, which have been said to resemble a Mayan temple or a rusty aircraft carrier, are already highly controversial. Yet they offer Pacific Ocean, Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco city views.

The building itself nicely accommodates the deYoung’s priceless and vast rotating art collections of American art from the 17th through the 20th centuries, as well as art of the native Americas, Africa, and the Pacific.

Hours & Admission
• The new de Young Museum is open from 9:30am to 5pm, Tuesday-Sunday and until 8:45pm Friday.
• Admission is $6-$10.
• Free admission for children under 13 and on the first Tuesday of each month.
• The museum courtyard, cafe, store, sculpture garden and tower can be entered for free.
Info: Call (415) 863-3330 or visit

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