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Grants to The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art Support its Missions
KANSAS CITY.- Grants totaling $2,637,000 for the fiscal year ending April 30 from foundations, government sources, corporate donations and sponsorships aided The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in its missions of connecting visitors with great art and providing educational programming for children and adults.

That total exceeded by nearly $1 million the amount raised the previous fiscal year.

Exhibition support included:

Art in the Age of Steam: Europe, America, and the Railroad, 1830-1960, a major exhibition opening Sept. 13 at the Nelson-Atkins, received $490,000 in grants. Contributing to that effort were the BNSF Railway, the Louis L. and Adelaide C. Ward Fund, The Terra Foundation for American Art*, the National Endowment for the Arts and Union Pacific.

The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation, New York City, gave $25,000 for the photography exhibitions Harry Callahan; Time in the West: Photographs by Mark Klett & Byron Wolfe and Mark Ruwedel; and In the Public Eye: Photography and Fame.

The Blakemore Foundation, Seattle, awarded $10,000 for education programs related to the exhibition Rising Dragon: Ancient Treasures from China.

Educational programming support included:

A grant of $100,000 from the Louettta M. Cowden Foundation was made to support the School Incentive Program, which has brought 11,580 students from public schools in the Kansas City, KS, and Kansas City, MO. districts to the Museum since the program’s inception 2005.

A grant of $100,000 to be given over four years from the Oppenstein Brothers Foundation was made in honor of Estelle Sosland, who is current chair of the Nelson-Atkins Board of Trustees. The money will be used for Museum education programs.

Conservation projects supported included:

An award of $150,000 from the Richard J. Stern Foundation for the Arts for the restoration of four small Flemish Phaethon tapestries. The four large tapestries are on display in Kirkwood Hall in the original 1933 building. The eight together tell the story of Phaethon, the son of Apollo, taken from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Woven in the Brussels workshop of Jan Leyniers in the 17th century, they are considered an excellent example of their type. It is rare to have a complete set.

An award of $57,710 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services for the restoration of two 19th-century American sofas. The sofas will be part of the reinstallation of the American art collections in refurbished space in the Museum’s original 1933 building. Those galleries are scheduled to be reopened in the spring of 2009. One sofa is a Renaissance Revival settee and the other a neoclassical piece.

Corporate support included:

A grant of $88,000 from AT&T to fund the expansion of the New Dimensions program, an innovative education program that brings middle and high school students to the Museum for a multi-visit, project-based learning experience, to include video conferencing to rural communities and underserved areas.

An award of $75,000 from Sprint to help fund community programs which allow children and families from the urban core to participate in Museum education programming.

Other support included:

General operating support: $146,000 from the Missouri Arts Council and $39,000 from the Arts Council of Metropolitan Kansas City, the first year of the ArtKC program by the Council.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services also provided $150,000 for enhancements to the Museum’s website

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