Skidmore College’s interdisciplinary Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, in Saratoga Springs, New York, has received a $100,000 challenge grant from the Ellsworth Kelly Foundation for the purpose of supporting the conservation and care of its 7,000-plus-work collection. The gift establishes the museum’s first endowment for conservation, and will also engage artists in interviews abut materials and processes, which will later be published. The grant, endowed in the year of the institution’s 15th anniversary, has been matched with an equal gift from an anonymous donor.
Over the phone, Berry elaborated on the Tang’s history with Kelly (a resident of nearby Spencertown, New York), as well as his own relationship with the artist: “We have shown Kelly’s work at the Tang, and I curated a large exhibition of modern and contemporary drawing called “Twice Drawn” in 2006 with Jack Shear [the director of the foundation]. I met them both when I worked as a studio assistant for Kelly in 1996 until 1998. It was a great time for me and I am forever grateful for the generosity and lessons offered during that transformative time. These are lessons I have with me at every part of my day at the Tang Museum—from practical details of the art world to ways of seeing objects in the galleries.”