Tucson Museum of Art Celebrates 100 Years

Tucson Museum of Art has announced plans for its centennial year celebration in 2024. What began as a small Tucson art association established in 1924 by artists and art education enthusiasts of the Tucson Woman’s Board, has grown into an American Alliance of Museums accredited, nationally recognized art museum, located at one of the most historic sites in the Southwest. 

With its extensive and varied collections, compelling exhibitions, vibrant programming, and community engagement activities, the Tucson Museum of Art offers a dynamic and welcoming space for artistic, community, and scholarly innovation – a unique place where art, culture, history, and heritage converge.

“Over the course of the past century, our museum has continued to grow and thrive thanks to the efforts of many community-minded friends and donors who have ensured TMA’s vitality. As we lay out a vision for the future, we will focus on expanding our reach and impact in Tucson and beyond through current programming and new initiatives. Connecting art to life remains a powerful mission,” commented Jon and Linda Ender Director and CEO Norah Diedrich.

“As we mark the centennial of the Tucson Museum of Art, we note with gratitude the extraordinary commitment and generosity of the collectors, benefactors, and volunteers over time who have made the museum the successful museum that it is today” said Michael Bylsma, president of the board of trustees. “We look forward to honoring the museum’s distinguished past through our Centennial year celebration — and to beginning the next exciting chapter in the museum’s history.”

Centennial Campaign

In recognition of this once-in-a-lifetime milestone, TMA’s $5 Million Centennial Campaign will raise funds to support the long-term financial health of the institution, while also providing generous funding in support of the museum’s annual operations. The ultimate goal is to ensure the museum’s capacity to serve current and future generations. TMA’s Centennial Campaign will focus on four key objectives:

• New Century Society donors will contribute to growing the endowment.

• Gifts to Mark the Century will ensure adequate annual funding needs are met.

• Historic Preservation funding will be dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of the five historically significant buildings located on campus, • Centennial Acquisitions and Gifts of art to the collection will build and enhance the museum’s permanent collection.

There are many other exciting funding opportunities and ways to contribute to the Centennial Campaign, including: endowment of the chief curator and director of education positions, naming opportunities for key galleries, preservation of the J. Knox Corbett House, and much more.

Alongside the financial campaign, TMA’s centennial is an opportunity to strengthen awareness of TMA’s history and current offerings, cement existing and expand potential relationships with the museum’s communities, and encourage greater engagement with Tucson Museum of Art and Historic Block.

Centennial Exhibition
Time Travelers: Foundations, Transformations and Expansions at the Centennial
Mar. 17 – Oct. 6, 2024

Time Travelers explores the relationship of art to time, presenting original contexts and offering new interpretations of significant artworks collected by the museum over the past century. Organized by three guiding concepts, this exhibition reconsiders the artworks relationships to the past, present, and future.

“Foundations” includes early and significant acquisitions that formed the core of the museum’s collection, as well as works in which artists look in hindsight to historical precedents.
“Transformations” features artworks that reveal an evolving relevance in the collection. And “Expansions” presents new narratives, voices, and perspectives. A series of related interpretative materials and programming will be planned to examine these ideas and artworks.

Committed to inclusion and equity, TMA approaches its collection in close dialogue with local communities and partners. It is a site of contemporary intersections of artworks that have multiple connections to many eras and interpretations. Time Travelers continues these efforts by fostering new relationships with the museum’s collections and audiences, linking its history with the region, and creating opportunities for conversations about and between artworks across time.

Time Travelers: Foundations, Transformations, and Expansions at the Centennial is made possible through the generous support of:

Centennial Year Lead Sponsors
Jon and Linda Ender
I. Michael and Beth Kasser

Feature Presenting Sponsor
Contemporary Art Society
Western Art Patrons
Tucson Museum of Art League
Kit and Dan Kimball

Feature Additional Support Sponsor
Dr. Peggy Jones and Alan Willenbrock

Centennial Gala
TMA’s 2024 Gala, “Celebrating the First 100 Years & the Beginning of the Collection” will take place the evening of Mar. 16. Guests will enjoy cocktails, mingling, silent and live auctions, and a French-themed dinner in honor of the first collection piece –La Revue Blanche, 1895, a color lithograph on paper by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, which was a gift of Frederick R. Pleasants. All proceeds benefit TMA’s exhibitions, programs, and community engagement activities.

Community Block Party
The highlight of TMA’s Nov. 10 Second SundAZe family day will be a Centennial Community Block Party featuring arts activities for all ages and celebrating TMA’s extensive collaborations with other Tucson organizations. Thanks to generous funding from Mr. and Mrs. William A. Small, Jr. founders of the Stonewall Foundation, a fund of the Community Foundation of Southern Arizona, TMA looks forward to reopening the historic La Casa Cordova, which houses the popular El Nacimiento, at the November 10 community gathering.

Additional programs, events, and resources related to the Centennial and public programs can be found at TucsonMuseumofArt.org/events

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