(Wichita, Kan.) The Institute of Museum and Library Science (IMLS) announced grant awards totaling more than $21 million for museums across the nation, including the Wichita Art Museum, one of only two Kansas museums to receive funding from the agency's largest competitive grant program, "Museums for America."
Grant money from "Museums for America" will be used to conduct a conservation survey for selected objects from the museum's art collection. The goal of the IMLS-funded survey is to identify specific, prioritized works of art in WAM's collection that would benefit from conservation and rank those artworks according to priority of need. WAM staff will work with conservators of varying specialties to address the diverse range of materials, including works on paper, mixed-media objects, paintings, and textiles.
Out of 449 total applications to IMLS, WAM was one of only 112 projects selected for "Museums for America." The award puts WAM in the company of larger art museums across the country who received this IMLS funding, including the Denver Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum.
"The award from our nation's capital conveys a wonderful vote of confidence for the hard work we do at the Wichita Art Museum," said WAM Director Dr. Patricia McDonnell. "The project to study and prioritize which artworks in our collection merit special attention, to conserve for present and future generations of Wichitans and other visitors, is very significant."
"As centers of learning and catalysts of community change, libraries and museums connect people with programs, services, collections, information, and new ideas in the arts, sciences, and humanities. They serve as vital spaces where people can connect with each other," said IMLS Director Dr. Kathryn K. Matthew. "IMLS is proud to support their work through our grant making as they inform and inspire all in their communities."
The Wichita Art Museum opened in 1935 and is home to the Roland P. Murdock Collection, one of the premier collections of American art. With a nationally distinguished collection, an Edward Larrabee Barnes-designed facility, and a growing audience, the museum is a public/private partnership, owned by the City of Wichita and managed by Wichita Art Museum, Inc. The mission of the Wichita Art Museum is to bring people, ideas, and American art together to enrich lives and build community.