The annual meeting in Houston began with a tour of The Menil's “treasure rooms,” which delivered exactly what they promised. A line of sculptures by Max Ernst greets visitors upon entering. There are rows of Magrittes and Picassos. Pollock, Rothko, and Matta all hang side by side with one another. A folding screen artfully decorated with cigar bands. And beaded masks and wooden carvings of animals are just the beginning. The rooms are full from floor to ceiling of works by surrealist and abstract masters as well as works by unknown African and Byzantine artists. There are four rooms that are divided by Surrealism, Abstraction and Decorative arts, Byzantine, and African and Oceanic arts.
The “treasure rooms” are located on the second floor of the Menil Collection. The building's cantilevered roof creates an optical illusion that hides the second floor from the ground level. The “treasure rooms” house a large portion of the collection when the items are not on display. The rooms are open to museum staff and scholars. Scholars will need to make arrangements to visit.
Following this tour, members were invited by Eric Wolf, Head Librarian at The Menil Collection, to see the library. Kurt Schwitters: Color and Collage, an exhibition at The Menil, was open to the public that evening and provided members the opportunity to see these rarely exhibited works.