Apr 19
News
The Hilma af Klint exhibition at the Guggenheim set a new attendance record for the museum.
Installation view, “Hilma af Klint: Paintings for the Future,” Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, October 12, 2018–April 23, 2019. Photo by David Heald, © 2018 The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.

Installation view, “Hilma af Klint: Paintings for the Future,” Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, October 12, 2018–April 23, 2019. Photo by David Heald, © 2018 The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.

Hilma af Klint, the Swedish spiritualist and pioneer of abstract painting, has broken the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum’s all-time exhibition attendance record. With one weekend to go, the museum’s survey of her work, “Hilma af Klint: Paintings for the Future,” has already been seen by more than 600,000 visitors, making it the most-visited show in the New York institution’s 60-year history. For the exhibition’s five final days, the museum will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily to accommodate last-minute crowds.

In a press release announcing the new attendance record, the Guggenheim noted that the exhibition’s popularity has had a ripple effect across several sectors of the museum. Since “Paintings for the Future” opened on October 12th of last year, museum memberships have gone up 34%, while the Guggenheim Store has seen af Klint-related products account for a full 42% of its sales. Tracey Bashkoff’s essential, 244-page catalogue for the af Klint exhibition has also smashed the sales record set by the catalogue for the 2009 Wassily Kandinsky exhibition—over 30,000 copies have been sold and counting. The record-setting show closes April 23.

Further Reading: How the Swedish Mystic Hilma af Klint Invented Abstract Art