Montclair Art Museum Awarded NEA Grant for "Matisse and American Art" | Montclair Art Museum
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National Endowment for the Arts Awards More Than $27.6 Million Across Nation


MONTCLAIR, NJ, December 8, 2015—In its first 50 years, the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) awarded more than $5 billion in grants to recipients in every state and U.S. jurisdiction, the only arts funder in the nation to do so. Today, the NEA announced awards totaling more than $27.6 million in its first funding round of fiscal year 2016, including an Art Works award of $40,000 to Montclair Art Museum (MAM) to present Matisse and American Art, a major exhibition that examines this French master’s profound impact upon the development of American modern art from 1907 to the present, scheduled for spring 2017. The Art Works category supports the creation of work and presentation of both new and existing work, lifelong learning in the arts, and public engagement with the arts through 13 arts disciplines or fields.


NEA Chairman Jane Chu said, “The arts are part of our everyday lives – no matter who you are or where you live – they have the power to transform individuals, spark economic vibrancy in communities, and transcend the boundaries across diverse sectors of society. Supporting projects like the one from the Montclair Art Museum offers more opportunities to engage in the arts every day.”


“The Montclair Art Museum is so pleased at the support of Matisse and American Art from the National Endowment of the Arts,” said Lora Urbanelli, MAM director. “That American painters of the 1960s through the present could continue to draw sustenance from Matisse is a testimony to his resilience as an artist and we look forward to presenting not only his work, but art by significant American artists who were inspired by him.”


The French painter, printmaker, and sculptor Henri Matisse (1869-1954) has been universally acclaimed for decades as a highly influential, cultural icon of the 20th century. Featuring 75 paintings, archival objects, sculpture, prints, and works on paper, Matisse and American Art will juxtapose works by Matisse’s with works by American artists from 1907 to the present, including Max Weber, Alfred Maurer, Maurice Prendergast, Stuart Davis, Richard Diebenkorn, Robert Motherwell, Ellsworth Kelly, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Romare Bearden, John Baldessari, Sophie Matisse, Faith Ringgold, and others. Matisse’s transformative impact on their works is revealed not only by their adaptations of his stylistic hallmarks but also through their choice and appropriation of his subject matter—still lifes, landscapes, figurative works, studio interiors, and portraits. The exhibition will be exclusively featured at MAM from February 4­ through June 18, 2017. It is curated by Gail Stavitsky, MAM chief curator, and will be accompanied by a major scholarly publication on this topic.


To join the Twitter conversation about this announcement, please use #NEAFall15. For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement, go to


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