Sursock Museum

Open daily from 10:00-18:00
Late opening on Thursdays from 12:00-21:00
Closed on Tuesdays

Admission to the Sursock Museum is free of charge

To book a group tour, guided or school tour of the collection display and special exhibitions, please send an email to info@sursock.museum

 

Sursock Museum is undergoing a rebirth. Once a center of Beirut’s pre-war vibrant cultural and arts scene, the Museum has been closed for over eight years.

Located on Sursock Rue, in Achrafieh, Sursock Museum is one in a series of architecturally stunning mansions which once housed Beirut’s aristocracy, the majority are still privately owned. But on his death in 1951, wealthy arts patron Nicholas Ibrahim Sursock bequeathed his 1912 Italianate mansion to the City of Beirut, stipulating that it be a museum. While other wealthy property owners bequeathed their homes to religious institutions, Nicholas Sursock wanted his home to have a social function. He wrote poignantly "I wish there would exist in Beirut, capital of the Republic of Lebanon, museums and exhibition rooms open to everyone, where master-pieces and antiques would be preserved and displayed.”  

From its opening Sursock Museum has been a contemporary art museum, hosting an annual emerging artists show Salon D’Automne, many of which joined Sursock’s impressive permanent collection of contemporary art from the 1950s, 60s, 70s. While other cultural institutions closed during the fifteen year civil war, Sursock museum remained open, continuing to host new work and cultural debates. But the museum fell out of use, awaiting long needed repairs, and a reinvigoration to keep up with the changing art scene dominated by new, more mobile, players like ashkal alwan and Beirut Art Center.

New Museum Director Zeina Arid (formerly of Arab Image Foundation) is leading that charge, supported by a team of world class curators and cultural managers Sursock museum will reopen fall 2015, with a celebratory exhibition of the history of Beirut’s representation from 1800 to 1960 - showcasing the museum’s collection, as well as its impressive new renovations. Revamped by a team of French Architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte and Lebanese Jacques Aboukhaled, the museum now hosts state of the art projection facilities, a sky-lit versatile exhibition hall, a library, cafe and bookshop. A longtime part of Beirut’s history, Sursock museum is being relaunched firmly into the 21st century - Arida is already planning a series of innovative new shows designed also to engage Beirut’s public and fulfill Sursock’s original ambition for the museum. We’re excited to see what she has planned!

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