Above: The Romanesque facade was the work of by Solon Spencer Beman, a famed Chicago architect. Image provided by the Minnesota Museum of American Art.

A certain museum in St. Paul just grew their pocketbook.

The Minnesota Museum of American Art will use the $325,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to support the installation of the museum’s artworks in the permanent collection galleries in it is new 36,000 square foot facility, the 19th-century Pioneer Endicott building in St. Paul. 

This is the second grant this month that the museum has announced. They recently received a $33K grant from the National Endowment of the Arts to support the exhibition “Brad Kahlhamer: A Nation of One,” which is ripe with symbolism from both Native American and vernacular cultures. The artist identifies as “tribally ambiguous.”

“The Luce Foundation grant is a huge recognition of the importance of our permanent collection of  American art, and the NEA grant acknowledges the significant work we’re doing with contemporary artists,” the M’s Executive Director Kristin Makholm told the Star Tribune.

The ongoing renovation's of the M will be completed in two phases over the course of 2018-2019. The Sifo Center for Creativity, which includes galleries, community spaces and an art education wing, opens to the public in late 2018. Phase two will wrap in 2019, housing additional galleries for showcasing the M’s collection of 4,500 works of American art.

Located in St. Paul’s Lowertown district, the Pioneer-Endicott building was partially designed by architect Cass Gilbert in 1890. The M initially moved into the Endicott building in 2013, reopening after being closed for three years. Executive Director Kristin Makholm has been at it since 2009, when she was hired to bring the bankrupt organization back to life. The M had intended to re-open permanently in the Pioneer-Endicott building in fall 2015.

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