UMD-Corcoran partnership proposal fizzles

February 20, 2014|By Carrie Wells, The Baltimore Sun

A proposal for the University of Maryland to rescue the ailing Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington is over, as officials announced this week that the institution would be largely absorbed by George Washington University and the National Gallery of Art.

The University of Maryland and Corcoran announced in April last year that they would explore a partnership, as UMCP officials hoped access to the museum's 17,000 artworks could boost the university's art program, while the 145-year-old Corcoran has struggled financially, with annual financial deficits in the millions of dollars.

The agreements between the Corcoran and GWU and the National Gallery are still being hammered out, but GWU is expected to take over the academic side of the Corcoran College of Art and Design. The National Gallery is expected to get some of the museum's $1 billion in artworks and distribute the rest.

A small legacy gallery will remain under the Corcoran name in the National Gallery. GWU will take ownership and responsibility of the Corcoran's historic building, which is estimated to need $138 million in repairs and renovation.

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