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Dear Members of our Museum Community,

Welcome to our July edition of "This Month in NYS Museums!"

In this newsletter, we extend our congratulations to the twenty seven New York State museums that received SVOG grants totaling just over $63 million. We are grateful for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer's support of our sector.

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum's "Activating Smithsonian Open Access" has commissioned seven design teams to develop new digital interactions and innovative tools from the Museum's open access collection that encourage people to engage with the collections beyond a passive looking experience. 

This past month, Eli McClain, our IMLS Building Capacity Project Fellow and I drove 1,973 miles and visited 15 museums, facilitating 5 workshops for our "Building Capacity, Creating Sustainability, Growing Accessibility" IMLS CARES Act grant project. We're highlighting a few of our participating museums in a new video series and the first is the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts at St. Bonaventure University in Olean, NY. With no gallery space and its building closed to the public, the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts created a virtual studio space and worked with teachers to connect students to art.

In this month's Letter from MANY Executive Director Erika Sanger, Erika believes that museum's long-term success will be connected to the ways we keep the learnings of 2020 relevant and puts forward questions to think about for the future.

Lastly, we are so excited to travel around the state this fall for our Partnership Forums, Museum & Folk Art Forum, and grant writing workshops. Learn more and register today. We can't wait to see you!

Thank you for your support,

Megan Eves

Marketing & Communications Associate


NYS Museums Receive $115 Million in SVOG Funding

Fifty three New York State museums and cultural institutions received federal COVID-19 relief through the Shuttered Venue Operating Grants (SVOG) program of the Small Business Administration, totaling just under $115 million. The relief funding comes almost 16 months after Congress approved the SVOG program. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) led the effort to include museums in the SVOG and a bipartisan coalition of Senators led by the initial sponsors of the SVOG program (formerly known as the “Save Our Stages” Act)–Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John Cornyn (R-TX). 

Read more

Cooper Hewitt: Activating Smithsonian Open Access

When the Smithsonian Institute launched Open Access in February 2020, copyright restrictions were removed from millions of digital collection images and nearly two centuries of data. Since then, creatives, researchers, and collaborators from around the world have downloaded, transformed, and re-shared this content for any purpose free, and without restriction. Supported by Verizon 5G Labs, Cooper Hewitt's Interaction Lab recently launched “Activating Smithsonian Open Access” (ASOA), an open call for designers to submit new digital interactions and innovative tools that enable play and discovery with the Smithsonian’s Open Access collections. Cooper Hewitt hopes to identify compelling projects that the Interaction Lab might explore for wider use across the Smithsonian in the future.

Read more

Building Capacity: Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts

With no gallery space and its building closed to the public, the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts at St. Bonaventure University created a virtual studio space and worked with teachers to connect students to art. Assistant Curator and Museum Educator Sean Conklin provided hybrid asynchronous days for teachers using digital tools and providing pickup and drop off art supplies. Using an artwork not normally accessible to the public, Faith Ringgold’s Sunflower: Quilting Bee at Arles, the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts partnered with the African American Center for Cultural Development in Olean, NY in a virtual object based learning activity for sixth grade students to better understand the prominence of quilts in Black art and culture by making their own story quilt.

Read more

Letter from Erika: Pathways

Dear Members, Colleagues, and Friends,

From March 22 to April 26, 2021, MANY gathered data on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on NY’s museums. The report that we will publish later this fall will paint a picture of a field grappling with tremendous change. Like the way glaciers deposited boulders from afar onto the granite ledges of the Maine coast 16,000 years ago, COVID-19 dropped into our society and caused us all to change direction. 

More than 80% of respondents agreed that the pandemic will make a lasting impact on the way their museums operate and serve audiences. Respondents shared that their museums are looking for post-pandemic pathways to financial stability, routes to advance relationships with their communities, and steps to create healthier institutions. 

Read more

Museum Opportunities


NYSCA FY2022 funding will be offered in 4 rounds.

Museums can apply for support in Round Three in both “Support for Organizations” and “Recovery” categories. Neither category requires matching funds. The “Recovery” grants are a ONE TIME only opportunity.

“Support for Organizations” replaces General Operating Support and Project Categories.

If you have a multi-year grant that continues into 2022 and you want to keep that contract, you do not need to reapply.

Support for Organizations awards will be between $10,000 and $49,500. The amount of the award will be based on your score given to your application based on the rubric provided.

Museums can also apply for a “Recovery” grant.

If your operating budget is between $100,000 and $10,000,000 you are eligible to apply for a $10,000 “Recovery” grant.

If your operating budget is below $100,000 you are eligible to apply for a $5,000 "Recovery" grant.

Program Contacts:

Kristin Herron,

Fabiana Chiu-Rinaldi,

Learn more

Humanities NY SHARP Recovery Grants

Action Grants of up to $20,000 ($1,500 to $10,000)

–are implementation grants for public-facing humanities projects that encourage audiences to reflect on their values, explore new ideas, and engage with others in their community. These grants aim to actively engage audiences through creative programming formats, including workshops, roundtables, panel discussions, exhibits, podcasts, and interactive digital platforms.

Apply by end of day Friday, October 1, 2021

Learn more

NEA American Rescue Plan Funding

Two funding opportunities available–one for arts and culture organizations, and one for local arts agencies to subgrant (NYSCA)

Arts and Culture Organizations

Grants to eligible organizations can fund staff salaries, fees/stipends for artists and/or contractual personnel to provide services for specific activities as part of organizational operations, facilities costs, costs associated with health and safety supplies for staff and/or visitors/audiences, and/or marketing and promotion costs.

Grant amount for either $50,000, $100,000 or $150,000

Cost share/matching funds are not required

NEA anticipates making 800 awards

Application deadline: August 12, 2021

Organizations Starting with Letters A-L:


Organizations Starting with Letters M-Z:


Learn more

NYSCA/GHHN Conservation Treatment Grant Program Applications Due 9/1

The NYSCA/GHHN Conservation Treatment Grant Program is a partnership of the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and GHHN that provides support for treatment procedures to aid in stabilizing and preserving objects held in collections of museums, historical, and cultural organizations in New York State. The Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation has provided additional dedicated support for conservation treatment projects in Nassau & Suffolk counties and New York City. The work must be performed by, or under direct supervision of, a professional conservator.

Learn more

Museums in the News

July 2021 Newsletter Sponsors

The Museum Association of New York helps shape a better future for museums and museum professionals by uplifting best practices and building organizational capacity through advocacy, training, and networking opportunities.

Museum Association of New York is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization. 

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Troy, NY 12180 USA

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