Annual Report 2018
The National Gallery of Art was conceived and given to the people of the United States by financier and art collector Andrew W. Mellon, based on his belief that the United States should have a world-class national art museum comparable to those of other nations. This unprecedented gift to the nation was accepted through a 1937 Joint Resolution of Congress. Today, the Gallery continues to operate through a unique federal and private partnership. We are grateful to the President and Congress for the funding that allows us to carry out the Gallery’s mission: to serve the United States of America in a national role by preserving, collecting, exhibiting, and fostering the understanding of works of art, at the highest possible museum and scholarly standards.
Since reopening the East Building in 2016 after a three-year renovation, the Gallery has delighted audiences with renovated and expanded gallery spaces. This fiscal year, the Gallery continued to plan and design additional East Building renovation projects through the Master Facilities Plan. These focused on the atrium skylight and building systems renovation in Tower 3, including fire and life safety improvements and a new back-of-house exit staircase. With con-tinued support from Congress, the Gallery entered the final stages of awarding a construction contract, and construction should be complete by early 2021.