Schnitzer Museum of Art announces grant from Henry Luce Foundation

Exterior of original Museum of Art/WSU in Fine Arts building.

By Debby Stinson, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art

PULLMAN, Wash. – The Henry Luce Foundation has given Washington State University’s Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art a $270,000 grant in support of the creation of a Collections and Learning Gallery.

The gallery will be located on the site of the original Museum of Art/WSU.

The Luce Foundation awards support to museums that exemplify the highest standards of scholarship and expertise. It adds distinction to the new state-of-the-art museum facility opened in April 2018.

“To date, this is the largest grant received by the museum, and the first grant received from the Luce Foundation,” said Laura Child, the museum’s development director. “It propels us towards accreditation, and we are excited to share this important news with our supporters.”

A new Collections and Learning Gallery will enable the museum to present selections from the permanent collection in open storage, making it accessible to students, staff, faculty and the regional community. The museum collection totals over 4,000 fine art objects and includes works by Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Kara Walker, Jim Dine, Roger Shimomura, and Deborah Oropallo, among other modern and contemporary artists. This will be the museum’s nexus for academic research, scholarly exchange, interdisciplinary collaborations, academic courses and professional training.

“The Collections and Learning Gallery will fulfill our essential goal of bringing rare and important cultural materials to a greater degree of public access. Facilitating our visitors’ interaction with these thought-provoking objects for inspiration, learning and enjoyment is something we all look forward to,” adds Ryan Hardesty, curator of art and exhibitions.

The foundation award allows the completion of Phase 1 of the project, scheduled to begin in the fall of 2018.  Phase 1 includes the purchase and installation of easily accessible open storage units to protect print, painting, and photographic collections. A full remodel of the former museum space, including instruction and presentation areas, accessible collection storage, and exhibition display cases to showcase the glass and ceramic collection, will require approximately $1,000,000.

Anna-Maria Shannon, museum associate director, said, “We are honored to receive funds from the Luce Foundation. The grant serves as a true testament to the abilities of the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art … and places the museum in a great circle of institutional peer museums across America.”



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