MoMA Receives $200 Million Bequest From Rockefeller Estate

MoMA Receives $200 Million Bequest From Rockefeller Estate

The Museum of Modern Art has announced an unrestricted gift of more than $200 million from the estate of David Rockefeller, who died in 2017 at the age of 101.

The bequest, which boosts Rockefeller's lifetime giving to MoMA to more than $300 million, complements the numerous modern and contemporary works, drawings, and prints he and his wife gave to the institution through donations, promised gifts, and funds for acquisitions. Highlights include paintings by Pierre Bonnard, Georges Braque, Paul Cezanne, André Derain, Paul Gauguin, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, and Paul Signac, as well as works of Latin American and contemporary American art. In 2005, Rockefeller pledged $100 million to MoMA to boost its educational programs and help finance exhibitions.

Rockefeller joined the board of MoMA in 1948 and served as chair from 1962 to 1972, as vice chair from 1972 to 1987, and as chair again from 1987 to 1993; he held the title of honorary chair until his death. In recognition of his longtime support of the museum, the MoMA board of trustees voted unanimously to name the museum’s directorship after him.

"It is my great honor to serve as the first David Rockefeller Director of the Museum of Modern Art," said Glenn D. Lowry. "As we look ahead to our exciting future and the opening of the new MoMA in October 2019, it's an energizing and fitting tribute to celebrate David's vision and passion for the museum's mission and its collection."

"My father's love of modern and contemporary art deeply enriched our family's life, and the lives of countless others through his passionate support of the museum," said David Rockefeller, Jr. "There could be no better person to carry this new title first than Glenn Lowry, who has always shared Dad's same forward-thinking vision and passion."

(Hero image credit: MoMA)