By Sophia Harris
Framingham State’s Danforth Art Museum received $15,000 from the Art and Culture Grant Program at the Foundation for MetroWest.
This is a non-profit whose goal is to “improve the quality of life of residents in the region,” according to Framingham State’s website.
The Foundation for MetroWest granted $642,500 in general operating grants to 49 Human Services and Arts & Culture nonprofit participants in the region, according to FSU’s website.
This donation was one of the largest the organization provided in 2022, according to the website.
Patricia Bossange, director of grants and sponsored programs, said the application for the grant was submitted in September 2022 and it was awarded in December 2022.
Jessica Roscio, director and curator of the Danforth Art Museum, said the money would be funding everything from new programming to updated technology concerning membership operations.
Eric Gustafson, vice president of Development and Alumni Relations, said the funding can go to anything related to the cost of operating the museum - for example, funding infrastructure, staffing, exhibits, and care for those exhibits.
Roscio added the grant would also fund exhibitions and art school programming.
She said, “We have a pretty robust art school as well as exhibitions and we'd like to do more things related to both of them.
“There are a lot of things that we either have in progress that we'd like to continue with or some new programming ideas that we'd like to implement,” she added.
According to the Foundation for MetroWest website, this non-profit grant program gives grants to organizations “that align with our vision for a vibrant community where artistic and cultural initiatives improve the quality of life and contribute to the economic vitality of our region.
“We promote rich cultural experiences that prioritize equitable access for all residents, foster connection and collaboration, and stimulate our region,” according to the website.
Bossange said the funding was given to Framingham State specifically because of the Danforth’s cultural outreach to the region - not just Framingham.
She said part of the application process was to highlight the broad range of people who “give their patronage” to the museum.
Roscio said in order to align with the mission of the non-profit, she hopes to foster a strong relationship among the art museum, faculty, staff, and students.
She said she hopes to include more programming in order to attract more people from both FSU and the MetroWest community.
“Arts and culture can make everyone's life better and if we have more opportunities, and if we're more accessible, and if we are more welcoming, then I think that does benefit the quality of life,” she said.
Roscio said when she found out the Danforth received the grant, she was “thrilled.”
She said it was the “first time that we have received a grant from them since we merged with FSU in 2018. So it was really exciting to be recognized by them.”
Roscio added this is one of the more “substantial” grants that the museum has received.
She said, “It's interesting with this particular funder, they didn't really show much interest in Framingham State until we acquired the Danforth.”
She added, “Now we're much more viable about getting grants from them because I think they really like the idea that it's a cultural institution rather than just educational and it serves anybody.”
Currently, Danforth is hosting an exhibit titled “Visionary Boston,” which showcases art from Boston during the mid-20th century.
Roscio said the exhibition is promoting Danforth's “mission of regional art - both historic and contemporary.”
She said the Art School is hosting winter vacation programming right now for students.
She added Danforth will be hosting a number of artists' talks coming in April.
Roscio said “Fashion In Bloom,” which is a collaboration with the Fashion Design and Retail Department and the Mancuso Design Awards, will take place in May.
She added senior portfolio designs from FSU students will be on exhibit in the permanent collection gallery.
Roscio said that the Danforth is open from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.
“We're always free to FSU students and we always welcome visitors. So if you haven't visited, cross Route 9,” she said.