The Cleveland Museum of Art rings in a new year with a party, and a look ahead to its centennial

The Cleveland Museum of Art's 2016 New Year's Eve party is especially noteworthy this year, as the museum begins its year-long celebration of its 100th anniversary.

Beginning at 9 p.m. this Thursday, the party features live performances by DJ MisterBradleyP, followed by King Britt, who is returning to Cleveland for the first time since this summer's Solstice event. In addition to a complimentary champagne toast and desserts at midnight, the party includes gallery programs, psychedelic visuals in the Atrium, curator-led tours, free admission to Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse, a cash bar and additional surprises. All of the museum's permanent galleries and temporary exhibitions will be open during the party.

Tom Welsh, director of performing arts at the museum, says, "We have an exciting centennial year ahead, and it all starts on New Year's Eve with King Britt in the Atrium ­— don't miss." Tickets are $40 for non-members and $30 for members.

In addition, CMA has planned a series of special exhibitions, celebrations, loans and events for 2016, designed to engage the community.

"The museum's year-long celebration will honor this great institution in myriad ways," promises CMA director William M. Griswold. "We have collaborated with staff and volunteers, as well as our outstanding board, generous donors, corporate partners and supportive community to plan meaningful and memorable programs that celebrate our history and set a bright and exciting course for the future. I invite everyone to take part in and enjoy the Cleveland Museum of Art's 2016 centennial."

For this milestone, the CMA is working with distinguished institutions such as the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and the J. Paul Getty Museum to bring works to Cleveland by artists like Titian, John Singer Sargent, Wassily Kandinsky and Marcel Duchamp, as well as a Luba mask from the Congo, a 17th-century silver sculpture from Tibet and a garland-style diamond necklace by Tiffany and Co. More than a dozen objects will be loaned. Some works will relate to the CMA's permanent collection, while others will highlight artists and objects not currently represented by the museum's permanent collection.

Additionally, CMA is planning several special centennial exhibitions throughout the year. These include Pharaoh: King of Ancient Egypt (March 13 to June 12), Converging Lines: Eva Hesse and Sol Lewitt (April 3 to July 31) and Art and Stories from Mughal India (July 31 to Oct. 23).

On June 6, the CMA will host a members-only birthday celebration The official CMA birthday party follows on June 7, and the Centennial Festival Weekend arrives June 25 and 26. On Saturday, Oct. 22, the museum hosts its centennial Gala. The gala will gather nearly 1,000 nationally renowned collectors, artists and philanthropists to support and celebrate the museum and its 100th anniversary; reservations are required.

The members-only birthday celebration includes special programs and surprises. Members will receive an invitation with details closer to the event. The official CMA birthday party celebrates June 7, 1916, the day the museum officially first opened its doors to the public. This day-long celebration includes special programs, group photos, surprises and even birthday cake.

The Centennial Festival Weekend is a two-day arts and music festival, including this year's Solstice, one of the CMA's signature events. Inside the museum, guests can participate in special programs, tours, music and more surprises. Outside the museum, and around Wade Lagoon, local artists will be creating original works. Saturday includes Solstice, the museum's annual international music festival. Sunday's grand finale features a Centennial Celebration Concert by the Cleveland Orchestra. Tickets are required for Solstice (and typically sell out very quickly), but the rest of the weekend is free and open to the public.

Throughout the year, the museum plans to engage the community through a special series of outreach programs. From April through October, the CMA is encouraging the public to create self portraits in any media, inspired by the CMA's collection, which can be shared through social media.

From May through October, the museum will offer two more unique programs. Its new centennial Art Truck will bring art to go, interactive presentations, studio classes and more programming directly to local neighborhoods. You can follow the Art Truck on Twitter using the hashtag #CMAArtTruck.

Additionally, from May through October, the museum will be providing centennial Creativity Kits to guests of all ages. These kits are designed to help visitors connect with the CMA's collection through art materials, creativity journals and collection guides.

The calendar includes two more big events for 2016. The 27th annual Parade the Circle promises its most spectacular collection of musical performances, dancers, costumes and stilt walkers. Teams of international artists from Brazil, India and South Africa/Burkino Faso are being flown to Cleveland to help celebrate.

On Oct. 9, all of Northeast Ohio is invited to the CMA for Draw Together: A Big Draw Event. Teaching artists will engage visitors in drawing classes in the galleries. Participants are encouraged to use the supplies provided in the Creativity Kits.

The CMA was founded in 1913 "for the benefit of all the people forever," said co-founder J. H. Wade II. It opened in the summer of 1916. The museum's mission statement and longtime financial support ensure that its collections will remain free to the public forever. It truly is one of our community's greatest assets.

For a complete list of centennial celebrations (and to reserve a spot at the various ticketed events), visit

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