BAMPFA opens in Downtown Berkeley

Downtown #Berkeley‘s abuzz this weekend with the opening of Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive‘s inaugural exhibition, Architecture of Life. The striking, idiosyncratic building designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro has 25,000 square feet of flexible exhibition space and opens to the public with Community Day starting today Sunday January 31st, at 11am.

Check out our quick montage from the member preview on Saturday featuring the Carla and David Crane Forum where two major art pieces can be seen from Center street: The temporary art wall mural by renowned Chinese artist Qiu Zhijie and the dramatic stepped seating created by Bay Area master woodworker Paul Discoe. He salvaged the wood from the Canary Island pine trees that were removed from the building prior to construction.

Charles Renfro makes a brief cameo from the press preview day.

Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 9.49.21 AM
Photo: Siciliana Trevino

BAMPFA Director Lawrence Rinder says, “The new BAMPFA will be the architectural and cultural centerpiece of downtown Berkeley. Combining serene spaces for viewing film and art with dynamic public areas, the building will inspire audiences for generations with its fresh, imaginative design and versatility.”

The first opportunity for the public to discover the new building, Community Day is the culmination BAMPFA’s Grand Opening Week. A day (and night) of activities mark this historic occasion.

Expect music, hands-on art-making, and other fun activities. Kathryn Roszak’s Danse Lumière will perform at 11:30am and 6:30pm. For timed tickets and details visit BAMPFA’s website

Screen Shot 2016-01-31 at 9.49.00 AM
Photo: Siciliana Trevino

The new BAMFPA integrates the 48,000-square-foot Art Deco-style former UC Berkeley printing plant with a 35,000-square-foot new structure. It has two film theaters, a performance forum, four study centers for art and film, a reading room, an art making lab, a cafe and an outdoor LED screen and viewing plaza.

The first day of regular programming is Wednesday February 3rd. Architecture of Life occupies all of the gallery spaces from January 31st to May 29th, 2016. Use the hashtags

#ArchitectureOfLife and #BAMPFA when posting.

BAMPFA is located at 2155 Center St., Berkeley; one block from the downtown Berkeley BART station. Street parking, nearby garages and bike parking are available.

Free for opening celebration; regular admission prices on BAMPFA website

Info: 510-642-0808,

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