The University of Notre Dame has announced a lead gift from Ernestine Raclin and her daughter and son-in-law, Carmen and Chris Murphy, toward construction of the Raclin Murphy Museum of Art at Notre Dame.
At 70,000 square feet, the $66 million Raclin Murphy Museum of Art will constitute the first phase of a planned 132,000-square-foot complex dedicated to the arts that includes the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center, Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park, Matthew and Joyce Walsh Family Hall of Architecture, and O'Neill Hall of Music. Construction on the museum is scheduled to begin in 2020, with an anticipated completion date in late 2021 or early 2022.
A trustee emerita, Raclin has been a community leader for many years on the local, state, and national levels and is a generous supporter of the university. In 2011, she, the Carmichael Foundation, and her family made a lead gift to Notre Dame to fund the renovation of the Morris Inn, a full-service on-campus hotel originally constructed in 1952 with a gift from her parents, the late Ernest M. and Ella L. Morris. She also contributed to Raclin-Carmichael Hall, home of the university's W.M. Keck Center for Transgene Research and the Indiana University School of Medicine-South Bend.
"I am deeply moved by this transformative gift that will fulfill the museum’s primary vision — creating an arts district to not only serve Notre Dame faculty and students, but to also form a bridge to community audiences," said Charles Loving, director of the Snite Museum of Art. "Our current museum is presently turning down some requests for tours and programs because the building is at capacity. We cannot display certain temporary exhibitions offered to us because of limited gallery space, and as the collection has grown we have had to convert some galleries to art storage vaults. In short, the new building will allow us to better fulfill the University’s mission as it relates to the arts."