The Windgate Foundation has made a $17.5 million gift to the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art to benefit the museum’s study of craft art and the acquisition of craft objects.
In 2021, Crystal Bridges will unveil its Crafting America exhibition, which “celebrates the skill and individuality of craft within the broad context of American art,” according to the museum’s website. Running from Feb. 6 to May 31, 2020, the exhibition will feature more than 100 works in ceramics, fiber, wood, metal glass and “unexpected materials.”
The Windgate Foundation will build on the Crafting America exhibition. Through the gift, Crystal Bridges will create a dedicated position for craft art and increase its research and programmatic support for the field, as well as increase its acquisitions in the field.
“Today, as we reflect on the nine years Crystal Bridges has been open to the public, we are grateful to the visionaries at Windgate Foundation, who have been champions of craft and fervent supporters of arts education at the museum,” Rod Bigelow, Crystal Bridges’ executive director and chief diversity and inclusion officer, said in a statement. “The Foundation’s significant contribution will further the work and impact of the Crafting America exhibition and expand conversations about American art, history and culture. Craft is important for Crystal Bridges and aligns with our mission because it is an inherently inclusive field that has been more accessible to women, people of color, immigrants, Indigenous peoples, and other marginalized communities.”
The Crafting America exhibition was developed by Jen Padgett, an associate curator at Crystal Bridges, and Glenn Adamson, a guest curator and scholar of craft, design history and contemporary art.