The Cleveland Museum’s trustees voted unanimously this week to begin the final phase of the museum’s massive expansion, according to Steven Litt in the Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Michael Horvitz, co-chair of the museum’s board, said the impending completion of the project will enable the museum’s staff to resume the energetic programming — particularly in the area of exhibitions — which the museum experienced in the 1980s and ’90s.
During those decades, under former Directors Evan Turner and Robert Bergman, the museum mounted as many as 25 shows a year ranging from intimate solo shows to massive blockbusters.
Attendance soared as high as 719,000 in 1987 and stayed well over 500,000 from 1996 to 2001, only to drop during the run-up to the big project and the construction, which required entirely closing galleries for most of 2006. […]
Since 2002, the museum has raised $220 million for the construction project, and nearly $322 million overall, including $102 million for the museum’s endowment and ongoing operations. The fundraising continued through two recessions, including the worst economic downturn since the Depression.
So far, money for the construction project has come from 372 individual donors and foundations. Of that group, the top six donors gave $103 million.
Cleveland Museum of Art Board OKs Renovation’s Final Phase (Cleveland Plain Dealer)