GMOA collides History with a Technicolor Dream


Words and Photos by Maddie Newton

In their new exhibition to revitalize the way their guests experience and observe art, the Georgia Museum of Art decided redecorated. The Director, William Eiland, and his team of curators collaborated to administer art to the public by adding a new dimension.

Their recently updated permanent collection encompasses guests with vivid walls the shades of forest green, Mean Girl pink and washed denim blue that’s congruous with intense and valuable historical art pieces.

I sat down with Dr. Eiland to discuss the Georgia Museum’s kaleidoscopic innovations.


Their revamped permanent collection debuted August 13th, 2016 and aims to “change [the] interpretation and concept of [its] featured works.”

The collection was originally arranged in chronological order and featured only American pieces before it underwent renovation. Realizing the affect European artists, like Mary Cassatt, had on American culture, they sought to “eliminate geographic barriers” and melded the two together in the new exhibition. The big change in this collection was inspired by itself. The GMOA team desired a new approach to help untrained eyes experience art as if they had on professional googles.

This colorful makeover does more than just beautify. Onlookers are able to “distinguish different aspects” of paintings more than ever before. This is because the curators meticulously composed their surroundings to set off certain hues and tones within them. The museum’s main idea behind remolding is to showcase their art in a more unique, comprehensive light.


“Color allows more focus on the works,” explained Dr. Eiland.

The brown room is a gleaming example of this. The golden-brown frames interact with the paint to construct an ambiance associated with the Renaissance era. This helps the viewer delve into the history behind the work. In the roseate pink room, you’ll find Impressionist era compositions. These works have overarching themes which include soft, floral palettes. The pink walls “are about light” and “intensify the mood and conceptualization” of the period. These are two objectives that the curators ensured to illustrate throughout the collection.


Truly looking more dapper than ever, the permanent collection has seen a sharp increase in the amount of time guests spend studying the art. Not only has the GMOA experienced a rise in their attendance, but have noted many attendees are coming from areas outside of Athens. Only positive feedback has been received and art buffs are raving.

Check out the new colorful renovations at the Georgia Museum of Art, open Tuesday – Saturday 10am-5pm and Sunday 1-5pm