DOTHAN, AL – May 24, 2021 – The Wiregrass Museum of Art (WMA) is pleased to announce it has received a grant in the amount of $25,000 from the Henry Luce Foundation to support three collections-based exhibitions in 2021.
A leader in art funding since 1982, the Luce Foundation’s American Art Program supports innovative museum projects nationwide that advance the role of visual arts of the United States in an open and equitable society, and the potential of museums to serve as forums for art-centered conversations that celebrate creativity, explore difference, and seek common ground. The Foundation aims to empower museums and arts organizations to reconsider accepted histories, foreground the voices and experiences of underrepresented artists and cultures, and welcome diverse collaborators and communities into dialogue.
WMA was awarded a responsive grant within the American Art Program, a category of funding designated for museums to encourage and facilitate both internal and outward-facing projects based in permanent collections. The grant will support the presentation of three exhibitions, from July through December 2021, which will connect the museum’s regional audience more closely to the art and artists of our time, and their works contained in WMA’s permanent collection.
Exhibitions will provide visitors with the opportunity to learn from artworks from the early 20th century to the present, showcasing the scope of the museum’s collections, including art from internationally recognized American artists, self-taught folk artists in the Deep South, and artwork with strong historical connections to American art traditions. WMA will provide public programming and extended interpretive components for these exhibitions, including artist talks and workshops, digital and app content, and virtual tours and videos.
“WMA has a dynamic permanent collection, and we’re excited to explore new themes in these exhibitions with the generous support of the Henry Luce Foundation, and to bring our community together by reinvigorating our collections focus. Works on exhibition will provide opportunities to learn from the past and present through engaging public programs, as we chart a path forward together,” said Dana-Marie Lemmer, WMA’s executive director and curator.
Collections-based exhibitions will elevate WMA’s work in collections care, giving the public a closer look at the museum’s ongoing stewardship of art objects held in the public trust. As select objects are exhibited and interpreted in new formats in 2021 exhibitions, this work will continue to inform future collections management needs and long term goals. WMA outlines its programmatic and organizational goals, including those for collections and exhibitions, in its strategic plan, available online at wiregrassmuseum.org.
About the Henry Luce Foundation
The Henry Luce Foundation seeks to enrich public discourse by promoting innovative scholarship, cultivating new leaders, and fostering international understanding. The Foundation advances its mission through grantmaking and leadership programs in the fields of Asia, higher education, religion and theology, art, and public policy.
About Wiregrass Museum of Art
Wiregrass Museum of Art inspires a lifelong appreciation for the visual arts by providing innovative educational programs that engage diverse audiences through the collection and exhibition of quality works. Since its inception in 1987, WMA has offered educational programs, nationally-acclaimed art exhibitions and community events throughout the year.
Its Board of Trustees guides the long-term vision and strategic goals, while its membership, City and County support, and grant funding provide the resources needed to fulfill its mission.