Columbia Museum of Art unveiling new rentable venue, gallery space, Thursday

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Photos by Karamie Sullivan

The Columbia Museum of Art has just gained almost 8,000 sq.- ft. of newly usable space, without having to expand the building.

A portion of the museum’s second floor has gone unused since its opening in 1998. However, after six months of renovations, the museum will soon be able to show off its new addition.

About 5,500 sq.-ft. of the space will be a rentable venue for weddings, business gatherings, parties, etc. The space will include a large event room with a sound system and adjustable lighting, a catering kitchen, bathrooms, and a freight elevator. The remaining 2,500 sq.-ft. will be four new art galleries and a meeting room.

Special Events Manager Mario Guevara said some people who have learned about the space already pre-booked it before it was even finished.

“When we first got the renderings, I was giving walk-throughs to brides and potential people renting out the space, and all I had was a blue print on a piece of paper,” said Guevara. He mentioned there are already three weddings booked for the space in 2019. There is no formal name for the venue yet, but Guevara said he’s been calling it the “loft” space. “Even though it’s not really a loft at all, it’s much bigger than that,” he said.

Seeing the renovations finally finishing up, Guevara said, has been an exciting experience. “It’s like a breath of fresh air,” he said. “We just got our certificate of occupancy yesterday, so just two days before our first event.” He said a family had booked the venue for a bat mitzvah months ago, and he was happy to see everything finished up just prior to its first usage. The space can accommodate anywhere from 300 to 400 people.

The official unveiling of the loft space is Thursday, along with the opening of their newest exhibit. “It’ll be a very simplistic set up upstairs because I want people to just experience the loft as it is,” said Guevara. Art museum members can attend the unveiling event and exhibit for free. Admission for the general public is $25.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Business, Columbia, Richland County

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