The Everson Museum, named after its principal benefactor, Helen S. Everson, was designed by architect I.M. Pei – his first museum commission.  The building is arranged as a squared pinwheel consisting of four cantilevered gallery blocks around a sculpture court.  These forms were poured in concrete, the surface of which has a hammered finish to bring out its pink granite aggregate.  The adjacent reflection pool offers another perspective of the building.  The Everson is considered to be one of the ten most architecturally-exciting museums in the country.  The Everson houses a substantial collection of contemporary and traditional artworks, including nationally-recognized examples of Asian and American pottery, European porcelains, and American salt-glazed stoneware.

The interior of the Everson Museum

Read More

John and Yoko in the Salt City!   Yoko Ono’s art exhibition entitled “This Is Not Here” took place at the Everson Museum in 1971.  It was her first major art exhibit.  When interviewed about it decade later, she referred to it as a milestone in her life and “a beautiful memory.”  It brought her and her famous husband to Syracuse to oversee the installation of the controversial show by a volunteer crew. The opening was October 9th, John’s birthday.  Four years later that would also be the birthday of their son, Sean.

Newspaper photos of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s visit to Syracuse and the Everson in 1971

The show consisted of “found art,” ordinary everyday objects presented in a museum setting, many of which the viewer could interact with.  Over 7,000 people stood outside in the rain waiting to pay a dollar to partake of the experience and hopefully, see a Beatle.  Art reviewers arrived from all over the country and as far away as Tokyo to critique the work.  Reactions were mixed among the critics as well as the public.  In 1974 John was considering a reunion of the Beatles and saw Syracuse as a potential location for it to happen.  That Salt City reunion was never to take place.