Anonymous Art Bequest Benefits Miami Art Museum and School of Fine Arts

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A substantial planned gift of $1.8 million in artwork has added significantly to the Miami University Art Museum's collection while helping the School of Fine Arts meet its fund-raising goal for the Miami University Campaign For Love and Honor.

The donor, a long-time friend of Miami and graduate of the School of Fine Arts who wishes to remain anonymous, is contributing an eclectic array of works that expands one of the region's most impressive collections while greatly enhancing current and future exhibitions at the museum. According to museum director Robert S. Wicks, the gift is typical of the donor's refined tastes and profound history of involvement with the museum.

"The donor has been incredibly generous to the Art Museum over the years, with more than 50 works of art added to our collections since the early 1990s, including such notables as Andy Warhol, Joseph Albers, Roy Lichtenstein, Jenny Holzer, Frank Stella, Larry Rivers and Cindy Sherman," Wicks said. "The works have proven a perfect fit for our collecting and educational goals, in part because of the donor's great eye for identifying upcoming and underappreciated artists. The latest gift promises to significantly strengthen our collections."

Completed in 1978, the Miami University Art Museum houses five galleries of changing exhibitions and a growing permanent collection of approximately 16,000 artworks. It pursues an active role in the overall cultural life of southwest Ohio, recognizing dual goals of public outreach and university cooperation in keeping with the broad scope of a university that emphasizes liberal education.

The gift, which counts toward Miami University's Campaign For Love and Honor, provides access to an impressive art collection not only to visitors in the region but also to students studying art and related fields in Miami's School of Fine Arts. According to James Lentini, Ph.D., dean of the School of Fine Arts, the substantial bequest also has helped the school reach an important milestone.

"We are delighted to receive this major gift to the Miami University Art Museum that bolsters our collection while also signaling the donor's long-time commitment to furthering the prominence of the arts at our institution," said Lentini. "With this generous gift, we are also proud to announce that the School of Fine Arts has exceeded our campaign goal of $15 million."

In meeting this fund-raising objective, donors to the School of Fine Arts have provided significant support for student scholarships, faculty enrichment, and academic and community programming, as well as to Miami's Performing Arts Series and the Art Museum.