Thanks to a seven-figure donation from the founder and namesake of its Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, the Brooklyn Museum is now the first American museum with a permanent curator of feminist art, as reported by The New York Times.
Sackler, a trustee at the Brooklyn Museum whose earlier endowment established the center for feminist art five years ago, announced the donation Wednesday night at the Brooklyn Artists Ball, the museum’s annual gala benefit.
The donation from Ms. Sackler and her family, the exact value of which has not been disclosed, will indefinitely finance the salary and activities of a curator of feminist art, according to a museum spokesperson who spoke to the Times. The position is now held by Catherine J. Morris.
Last night’s Artists Ball also marked the Brooklyn Museum’s first-ever First Awards, which helped to commemorate the fifth anniversary of the Sackler Center for Feminist Art by honoring 15 women who were first in their fields. Honorees, who were presented with a glass sculpture designed by artist Judy Chicago, included Sandra Day O’Connor, Toni Morrison, Connie Chung, and Chief Wilma Pearl Mankiller, the first female chief of the Cherokee Nation.
The awards were presented by Ms. Chicago, Ms. Sackler and Gloria Steinem.
As the Eagle has reported before, Ms. Chicago’s famous feminist art installation “The Dinner Party” is now on display at the Sackler Center. The work is a huge triangular dinner table with place settings for 39 distinguished women, mythological and mortal, culled from three millennia of herstory.
Recipients of the First Awards are now “21st- century, permanent members of the symbolic fourth wing of ‘The Dinner Party,'” according to a statement from the awards ceremony’s organizers.