Fresno Art Museum reopens after 7 months

Art lovers are being asked to call in advance to guarantee entry, while masks and social distancing are required.
FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Following months of shutdown due to COVID-19 restrictions, Fresno's only accredited fine arts museum is back open.

The Fresno Art Museum welcomed the public on Thursday for the first time in seven months.

"We are very much looking forward to people come through and see the exhibitions and just be with the art again," said museum curator Sarah Vargas.

Visitors will find a couple of new exhibits right now.

One features impressive works by nearly 40 women artists while the other consists of intricate quilts and other pieces by Bonnie Peterson.

"She is a textile artist and she's also an avid backpacker and a big fan of Yosemite. She's incorporated those two passions to create these wonderful quilts that talk about the natural beauty of the landscape," said Vargas.

According to the curator the closure took a financial toll on the museum but the reopening is a chance for a return to normalcy and to recoup losses.

The museum was able to pay bills during the shutdown after receiving federal COVID relief funds, while the Fresno City Council approved $1.5 million from the CARES Act to provide grants of up to $150,000 for museums, theaters and other local arts programs.

"We did receive a PPE loan at the beginning of the pandemic, which was an enormous help to us. It definitely helped us keep our staff going through that closure."

The museum is open Thursdays through Sundays with capacity limited to 25% and with timed ticketing.

Art lovers are being asked to call in advance to guarantee entry, while masks and social distancing are required.
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