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DIA exterior at night
DIA exterior at night

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and The J. Paul Getty Trust pledge $13 million towards the Detroit Institute of Arts $100 million commitment to the Grand Bargain

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

DIA Pamela Marcil 313-833-7899 
Mellon Foundation Michele S. Warman 212-500-2530
Getty Trust Julie Jaskol 310-440-7607

Gift demonstrates significant national interest in securing the future of the DIA
and Detroit’s pensioners 
(Detroit)—The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA) announced today that New York-based The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Los Angeles-based J. Paul Getty Trust have pledged a total of $13 million toward the DIA’s commitment to raise $100 million as part of a “grand bargain” that will help the City of Detroit emerge from bankruptcy, support city pensioners and protect the museum’s art collection for the public.

The $13 million consists of up to $10 million from the Mellon Foundation and $3 million from the J. Paul Getty Trust. Mellon has pledged $5 million immediately, with the full amount contingent on the museum raising sufficient matching funds to meet its $100 million fundraising requirement.

“These are truly extraordinary gifts,” said Graham W. J. Beal, director of the Detroit Institute of Arts. “While these funds will ultimately support city pensioners, the contributions from the Mellon Foundation and the J. Paul Getty Trust demonstrate their deep commitment to the visual arts as a crucial factor in a healthy society. The Mellon Foundation has long supported curatorial and conservation activities at the DIA and we are deeply grateful that the J. Paul Getty Trust chose to join them in helping ensure the future of the museum.”

“As part of a history of safeguarding the nation’s art and cultural heritage, the Mellon Foundation has long supported the integral importance of the DIA’s collections to the museum’s mission,” said Mariët Westermann, vice president of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. “By pledging this unusually large grant to a single institution, the Foundation recognizes the significance of the DIA for the ongoing recovery and renewal of Detroit, and affirms its confidence that the museum will remain critical to the cultural life of the city and the nation.”

“The Getty is proud to participate with other distinguished supporters in addressing the unique situation that is currently facing the DIA, through no fault of its own,” said James Cuno, president and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust. “As an organization dedicated to the visual arts, the Getty is offering its support to promote a resolution that leaves intact this great institution.”

The grand bargain will provide Detroit’s pensioners more than $800 million from local donors, local and national foundations and the State of Michigan over a 20-year period, subject to present value discounts for more rapid donor payments. Depending on donor preference, funds will be directed to a supporting organization of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan and then disbursed for city pension payments. As part of the grand bargain, the City of Detroit will transfer ownership of the DIA’s collection, building and related assets to the private nonprofit corporation that currently operates the museum, Detroit Institute of Arts, Inc.

The Grand Bargain was proposed by the mediators of the city’s bankruptcy and led by Chief Judge Gerald Rosen of the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan, and attorney Eugene Driker.


The Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), one of the premier art museums in the United States, is home to more than 60,000 works that comprise a multicultural survey of human creativity from ancient times through the 21st century. From the first Van Gogh painting to enter a U.S. museum (Self-Portrait, 1887), to Diego Rivera's world-renowned Detroit Industry murals (1932–33), the DIA’s collection is known for its quality, range and depth. The DIA’s mission is to create opportunities for all visitors to find personal meaning in art.

Programs are made possible with support from residents of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties.