Assessing The Sea Change In Arts Funding

It’s not easy being in charge of a big museum in the middle of a major expansion while, all around you, budgets are being slashed and legislators are calling you an expendable piece of the state funding puzzle. Eugene Gargaro, Jr is a month into his new job as board chair at the Detroit Institute for the Arts, and after only a few weeks, he’s feeling the legislative pinch. “There’s been a significant change in state funding. Ten years ago, the museum received about $16 million. It’s possible that we’ll only receive $2 million or less next fiscal year. We’ve come a long way since the early 1990s, and yet we still need that vital state support, and we have to get better at making our case.”