Adopt an Artwork
MIT’s Permanent Art Collection, inaugurated in 1951, has earned the Institute national recognition as a leader among universities in making the visual arts an integral aspect of higher education. A poll of more than 500 curators taken by The Public Art Review listed MIT’s public art collection as one of the top ten such collections in the United States.
The MIT List Visual Arts Center proudly stewards this vast collection that consists of more than 50 permanently sited, publicly accessible works on campus—including new commissions through the Institute's longstanding innovative Percent-for-Art policy—as well as more than 1,500 works of art sited in offices, conference room, and lobbies throughout campus. Another 400-plus prints and photographs are loaned to students over the academic year.
Stewardship includes the responsibility to care for this large and diverse collection, such as conservation of sculptures, works on paper, and paintings; washing, waxing, and/or painting outdoor sculpture; re-siting works to better protect and preserve their integrity; and many other related activities. The List Center receives $7,500 annually from MIT for conservation, which must regularly be supplemented by generous donors, who have included the Council for the Arts at MIT; alumnus Elliot Wolk, who has given an endowment to support the care of works he has given to MIT and who has adopted a Mark diSuvero sculpture located near the Stata Center; and several foundations and government agencies. Their generous contributions have supported major conservation of many works on campus, including the bell tower by Theodore Roszak and altar screen by Harry Bertoia in the MIT chapel, a sculpture by Jean Robert Ipoustéguy, bronzes at Hayden Library by Jacques Lipchitz, and many others.
The List Center has recently received a $50,000 award from the Henry Luce Foundation for conservation of Kenneth Noland's monumental wall-painting Here-There, which is located in the Wiesner Building lobby, but double this amount is needed to begin treatment of this unique work by a major 20th-Century artist.
Unfortunately, this opportunistic practice of matching donors' priorities with collection needs in inefficient, so a backlog of unmet needs, both regular maintenance and major conservation, is constantly growing.
Adopt a Sculpture
You can help to ensure that the many remarkable works of art on the MIT Campus will be there for future generations to enjoy by adopting a sculpture. The LVAC staff has obtained estimates for treating those works most in need over the next five years. The average cost of such treatments is $4,500. A single gift of that amount would enable us to fully conserve a work for the future. An endowed gift of approximately $115,000 would provide ongoing treatment and maintenance for your favorite work on campus.