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Regional Art Museum Finds New Home In Ventura County Shopping Center

(CMATO photo)
The art of Kevin Sloan will highlight the next California Museum of Art Thousand Oaks exhibition, when the museum opens in its new space in the Oaks Mall in Thousand Oaks in November

So, you expect that you can find everything from shoes to makeup when you make a trip to the mall. Some are even becoming social spots, with restaurants and movie theaters. But, one of the largest malls in Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties is increasing its cultural offerings. The California Museum of Art Thousand Oaks is moving into a more than 5000 square foot space in The Oaks mall in Thousand Oaks.

Tony Principe is Chairman of the Museum. He says it’s a big move for the non-profit, which was launched by community members in 2010.

Short term, the non-profit had a deal to operate a small museum in a converted restaurant space on Thousand Oaks Boulevard, next to the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza. The group also developed a proposal to build a facility on city property next to the Plaza. But, the city let the three year exclusive negotiation period lapse, because it wants to pursue commercial options for the two to three acres of land. So, the museum started looking at other ideas past the small space they are in now as they come up with new long term plans.

Work is already getting underway on the space, with a planned opening November 8th.

Tish Cabezas is Senior Marketing Manager at The Oaks Mall. She believes hosting the museum is not only good for the community, it’s good for business.

Meanwhile, against the backdrop of finding space for the museum, it’s been moving ahead for the last few years with exhibitions and programs.  It’s Executive Director, Tish Greenwood, came from the Getty Museum organization, and has used her connections to bring works from other museums to CMATO for shows.

Principe says he sees the Oaks as a home for the museum for at least two to four years. He says the hope is the new, much more visible site will not only help the museum grow, but to expand the potential audience to people who might not be traditional museum visitors.