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Schumer & Higgins announce two federal grants totaling $500,000 for Albright-Knox Art Gallery

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Fri, Jan 24th 2020 03:35 pm
Janne Sirén, director of Albright-Knox, left, stands with Congressman Brian Higgins.
Janne Sirén, director of Albright-Knox, left, stands with Congressman Brian Higgins.

Federal funding through National Endowment for the Humanities dedicated to component of ak360 expansion project

‘Art Truck,’ which brings arts into local neighborhoods, awarded separate grant through National Endowment for the Arts

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and Congressman Brian Higgins announced federal grants totaling $500,000 for Albright-Knox Art Gallery initiatives.

“The Albright-Knox Art Gallery is a world-class cultural institution and one of Buffalo’s greatest treasures. This expansion represents years of hard work by the AK team and wonderful community and donor support. The 1905 building is the centerpiece of Western New York’s presence in the art community, and its preservation and modernization is critical to the gallery’s continued success. I was proud to help deliver this funding and I have no doubt that the continued growth of the Albright-Knox will make Buffalo an even greater destination for art and arts education,” Schumer said.

Higgins added, “It is an exciting time for the Albright-Knox and art access in Western New York. Under the leadership of Janne Sirén, we have seen the growth of public art, traveling art and now a major expansion of the historic Elmwood Avenue campus. These federal awards recognize the national significance of the work being done by the great team at Albright-Knox and allows for an enhanced art and cultural experience for those who live in and visit the Buffalo-Niagara Region.”

 “We are thrilled to receive these grants from the NEH and NEA,” said Albright-Knox Peggy Pierce Elfvin Director Janne Sirén. “The arts are a cornerstone of any thriving community, and these grants will allow the museum to continue its important work of inspiring and empowering residents of our region and visitors from around the world.”

Albright-Knox has been awarded $475,000 through the National Endowment for the Humanities. The federal funding will be used toward the AK360 campus expansion project, which is currently underway and planned for completion in 2022. Specifically, the NEH award will be directed to rehabilitation of the roof on the historic 1905 building, replacing the current roof, which consists of different structural materials with new coverage that provides better protection for the building and its contents while maintaining its historic integrity.

The capital grant funding was awarded through the NEH’s Infrastructure and Capacity Building Challenge Grant Program. Albright-Knox was one of just 32 projects nationwide awarded funding through this program sharing $15.2 million in awards.

A second grant awarded through the National Endowment for the Arts for $25,000 was awarded for the Albright Knox Art Gallery’s “Art Truck: Creativity on Wheels” program. “The Art Truck,” first launched by Albright-Knox last October, delivers art programs and hands-on activities directly to local neighborhoods, expanding art access to new and underserved audiences. The “Art Truck,” launched thanks in part to the generosity of BlueCross and Blue Shield of Western New York, will be able to expand its art education reach to local schools, libraries, parks, community centers and public events with the help of this federal grant.

Established as an independent federal agency by Congress in 1965, the NEA provides support and funding for excellence in the arts and arts education.

Since 2000, art and cultural organizations in Buffalo have received over $3.3 million through the National Endowment for the Arts. In addition, Buffalo organizations and educational institutions have been awarded more than $6.57 million through National Endowment for the Humanities.

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