NORMAN — The Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art has undergone a number of changes in the six years since director Ghislain d'Humieres came aboard. But the most obvious is simply that there's more of it.
As the museum's director and chief curator of the University of Oklahoma art museum, d'Humieres oversaw the construction of the 18,000-square-foot Stuart Wing, an expansion that doubled the exhibition space in the museum.
Now, d'Humieres is leaving the university to head up a similar project at the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Ky. That museum is in the midst of a three-year expansion and is expected to reopen in 2016.
Besides just expanding the exhibition space in the OU museum, d'Humieres said the expansion there allowed him a certain amount of flexibility to design exhibitions that might not have been possible before — more dynamic exhibits that bring the museum into the 21st century, he said.
In the past, the OU museum, like many museums around the country, followed a “19th century-ish” model for what a museum should be, he said. Its exhibitions were static — designed for visitors to walk through and enjoy.
Since the expansion, the museum has been able to become more of a teaching tool, he said, partnering with other departments on campus for certain projects.