Frankenthaler Foundation Energy Project Gives $10 Million to Museums

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NS Helen Frankenthaler The foundation, named after the American abstract expressionist painter, announced on Wednesday that it has committed $10 million to the Frankenthaler Climate Initiative to help the nation’s visual arts institutions become more energy efficient.

“We wanted to help US arts institutions get involved in the climate fight,” the foundation’s president, Fred Iseman, said in a statement. “There is a void, a crying need to be filled, to provide technical knowledge and financial support for arts institutions to identify their needs, identify problems, and implement solutions.”

Starting at around $7,300 (Laguna Museum of Art in Laguna Beach, California) and including the top prize of $100,000, the initial donation round totals $5.1 million and includes 79 institutions in more than 25 states.

Fifteen of the institutions are in New York and support museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art ($50,000). Elsewhere, smaller museums such as the Boston Museum of Fine Arts ($100,000) and the William A. Farnsworth Library and Art Museum in Rockland, Maine ($29,523) also receive awards.

The California Indian Museum and Cultural Center in Santa Rosa is using the funds to build a more resilient energy system and cleaner air system that will turn it into a safe haven for at-risk residents during natural disasters like wildfires ($100,000). The Museo de Arte de Ponce in Puerto Rico will use a $50,000 grant to help it create an earthquake-proof museum. The Guggenheim ($35,000), the Museum of Modern Art ($50,000), and the Davis Art Museum at Wellesley College in Massachusetts ($100,000) are using grants to help them become carbon neutral.

An additional $4.9 million will be awarded over the next two years, with the next grant cycle expected to open in early 2022. The full list of grantees is available at: frankenthalclimateinitiative.org.

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