Milwaukee Art Museum Statement on the Proposed Elimination of NEA

Milwaukee Art Museum Statement on the Proposed Elimination of NEA:

As an agent of the public trust, the Milwaukee Art Museum joins the outcry across the country against the proposed elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and similar agencies.

For the Milwaukee Art Museum, NEA funding has been critical in propelling the Museum’s mission to collect and preserve art and present it to the community as a vital source of inspiration and education. In 1992, the Museum received an NEA Challenge Grant for $750,000 that was matched to build a $1.5 million endowment at the Museum. The Museum draws 5 percent ($80,000) from this endowment every year. NEA grants supported the exhibitions American Fancy: Exuberance in the Arts, 1790–1840 and Street Seen: The Psychological Gesture in American Photography, 1940–1959, among others, as well as the acquisition of nearly 200 works for the Museum’s Collection, including gifts from the Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection.

The NEA has further provided the Museum with indemnity agreements, which help offset the high cost of insuring art exhibitions. These agreements have allowed us to share significant bodies of work by artists Wassily Kandinsky, Andy Warhol, Jan Lievens, and Rembrandt with our visitors—affording many from throughout Wisconsin and the region with once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.

The National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities Act of 1965 states, “It is vital to democracy to honor and preserve its multicultural artistic heritage as well as support new ideas, and therefore it is essential to provide financial assistance to its artists and the organizations that support their work.” We share in that belief and ask that you join us in standing strong against the proposed cuts to these agencies.  

Please, get involved:

Read the National Foundation on the Arts and Humanities Act of 1965.

Learn about effective advocacy from the American Alliance of Museums.

Send a message to your congressional representatives, urging them to protect the funding of the NEA and NEH.

The Milwaukee Art Museum
The Milwaukee Art Museum Board of Trustees

About the NEA
Established by Congress in 1965, the NEA is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America. Visit www.arts.gov to learn more about NEA.

About the Milwaukee Art Museum
Home to a rich collection of over 30,000 works of art, the Milwaukee Art Museum is located on the shores of Lake Michigan. Its campus includes the Santiago Calatrava–designed Quadracci Pavilion, annually showcasing three feature exhibitions, and the Eero Saarinen–designed Milwaukee County War Memorial Center and David Kahler-designed addition. The Museum recently reopened its Collection Galleries, debuting nearly 2,500 world-class works of art within dramatically transformed galleries and a new lakefront addition.

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Questions of Provenance: Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s Three Cuirassiers, Part 2

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French, 1864–1901), Three Cuirassiers, 1879. Oil on canvas. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley M1977.149. Photo credit: John R. Glembin.

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French, 1864–1901), Three Cuirassiers, 1879. Oil on canvas. Milwaukee Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Harry Lynde Bradley M1977.149. Photo credit: John R. Glembin.

The Milwaukee Art Museum’s current feature exhibition, Milwaukee Collects, includes more than 100 objects from nearly 50 private collections in the Greater Milwaukee area. It offers an opportunity to see treasures that are typically not on public view. At the same time, it reminds us that the Milwaukee Art Museum’s collection is part of a long tradition of collecting in the community. This is the first in a series of blog posts that will explore the provenance of selected artworks in the collection and how they came to be here.

Last summer, we took a closer look at a little gem of a painting in the European collection: Three Cuirassiers by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (French, 1864–1901). It is a rare early oil painting by the great Post-Impressionist artist, done when Lautrec was only fourteen! So, how did the painting come to be in Wisconsin, at the Milwaukee Art Museum? Let’s take a closer look at the provenance trail.

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Community Partner Project: Penfield Montessori Academy

This gallery contains 16 photos.

Throughout the month of January, families who visited the Kohl’s Art Generation Studio made art for other kids to enjoy by contributing to a community mural that is displayed at Penfield Montessori Academy. Penfield Montessori Academy employs a child-centered exploratory … Continue reading

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Meet the collectors: Christine Symchych

Christine Symchych is a member of the Milwaukee Art Museum’s board. She and her husband, Jim McNulty, focus their collecting on photography.

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Meet the collectors: Eckhart Grohmann

Ludwig Knaus (German, 1829–1910). The Golden Wedding, 1859. Oil on canvas. Collection of Eckhart and Ischi Grohmann.

Ludwig Knaus (German, 1829–1910). The Golden Wedding, 1859. Oil on canvas. Collection of Eckhart and Ischi Grohmann.

Eckhart Grohmann has collected art since the 1960s. His “Man at Work” collection, which he donated to the Milwaukee School of Engineering, comprises more than eleven hundred paintings and sculptures and focuses on people at work through time. The Grohmann Museum at MSOE is named in his honor.

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