A Day at Mingei | Mingei International Museum

Planning to visit soon?

Here is a comprehensive list of the ways you can enjoy the transformed Mingei – from viewing commissioned artworks and public spaces to sharing your experiences with us on social media.

Hedgerow by Jennifer Luce
liquid2solid by Christina Kim
Sessions by Petra Blaisse

In 2019, the Museum commissioned eight new works by six visionary women artists. Each contributes a key element of function and beauty to Mingei’s transformation.

  • Sessions by Petra Blaisse – A billowing, acoustic curtain that stretches along the entire length of the 40-foot retractable glass wall in the Theater

  • Truth & Beauty in Black by Claudy Jongstra – A 30-foot felted mural that hangs above the bar as a sound-dampening textile within the new Bistro

  • sugi/kuruminoki and liquid2solid by Christina Kim:

    • sugi/kuruminoki – A pair of light, cut paper window screens to be installed in the Founders’ Gallery, home to the Museum’s iconic Nakashima table

    • liquid2solid – A series of flowing, hand-sewn temporary curtains to be used in the galleries, each made from off-cut waste of Dyneema®, a technological fabric

  • Hedgerow and Suspended Refrain by Jennifer Luce:
    • Hedgerow – A sculptural fence defining the new public courtyard
    • Suspended Refrain – A perforated stainless steel canopy found on the interior public plaza and stretching the length of Shop Mingei and Café Mingei

Fan favorites from the Museum’s permanent collection are also on view – including the Mingei International Museum Chandelier by Dale Chihuly, A Palace for Wednesday by Alice Hudson, The Poet and His Muse by Niki de Saint Phalle, and many more.

Smoyer-Dickinson Terrace

Explore Mingei’s New Public Areas

In collaboration with LUCE et studio and its architect, Jennifer Luce, Mingei’s transformational construction project prioritizes openness, with the plan to become Balboa Park’s living room.

The Commons Level (main floor) of the Museum is accessible from two main entrances, Plaza de Panama and Alcazar Garden, and will be open and free to the public at all times. On this level you'll find:

  • Shop Mingei – a chic shopping destination that features handmade and thoughtfully designed items from local and international creatives.
  • CRAFT CAFÉ – where you can grab a coffee, tea, and even some avocado and toast.
  • An outdoor Courtyard with ample gathering space and a warm welcome for visitors.
  • ARTIFACT Mingei’s full-service restaurant is open for lunch and dinner. Lunch is served Tuesday through Saturday from 11:30am to 2:30pm and dinner is served Thursday & Friday 5:00 - 8:30pm. There's also a happy hour Thursday - Saturday 3:00 - 5:00pm!

The upstairs Gallery level features newly configured, flexible spaces with sculpted plaster ceilings referencing origami. This level is also home to the Frances Hamilton White Art Reference Library and Founders Gallery.

And for the first time in decades, the two upper-level terraces are open to the public. By reclaiming lost spaces within a static footprint, visitors now have an opportunity to experience the full size and history of the building while enjoying views of Balboa Park.

Mini Mingei art-making activity.

Engage with us!

Share your experience at Mingei with us – whether in person to our staff around the Museum or on social media. We’d love to hear from you and connect about your experience in the transformed Mingei! Follow us on Instagram and make sure to tag us on your adventure!

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