Federal Lifeline Provides Financial Relief for Tacoma Art Museum

On May 5 Tacoma Art Museum was notified of acceptance for a $520,000 loan from the federal Payroll Protection Program...

On May 5 Tacoma Art Museum was notified of acceptance for a $520,000 loan from the federal Payroll Protection Program (PPP). Administered by the Small Business Administration, this loan will be used to cover payroll for TAM employees through July 1. On May 6, TAM returned 38 staff positions to their regularly scheduled hours. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic TAM shuttered our doors on March 13.

“We are incredibly grateful to get this aid through PPP,” noted David F. Setford, TAM’s Executive Director. “While this doesn’t offset the normal admissions income or generous community contributed income projected in this year’s budget, it does allow us to take care of people and our community. Under Governor Inslee’s plan, museums are a Phase 3 business and we don’t know when we will be able to welcome back the public. In the meantime, TAM is very active online.”

TAM has ramped up digital offerings such as TAM at Home, a digital arts education instructional series, online teacher workshops, and virtual art talks.

The annual spring luncheon, previously scheduled for April 28, has been transitioned online. From May 26 to June 1, TAM will focus attention on raising funds and highlight the new 5-year commitment to acquiring art work by women artists and artists of color. Culminating in a live virtual event on Monday, June 1 broadcast through Zoom, participants will get a chance to hear and see some of the ways that artwork by diverse artists will be present in upcoming exhibitions and TAM’s permanent collections.

“We recognize that many American art museums, including TAM, have extensive collections of art work by white men. We also strongly believe that other artists have an important place in our museum and need to be accessible to our community,” stated Setford.

Tacoma Art Museum remains closed to the public.

About Tacoma Art Museum: Celebrating over 80 years, Tacoma Art Museum is an anchor in Tacoma’s downtown with a mission of connecting people through art. TAM’s collection contains more than 5,000 works, with an emphasis on the art and artists of the Northwest and broader Western region, 25% of which consists of studio glass. The collection includes the largest retrospective museum collection of glass art by Tacoma native Dale Chihuly on permanent view; the most significant collection of studio art jewelry by Northwest artists; key holdings in 19th century European and 20th century American art; and one of the finest collections of Japanese woodblock prints on the West Coast. In 2012, TAM received a gift of more than 300 works of western American art from the Haub Family Collection, one of the premier such collections in the nation and the first major western American art museum collection in the Northwest. The Haub family also contributed $20 million for an endowment and expansion completed in 2014. In January 2019, TAM inaugurated the Rebecca and Jack Benaroya Wing which will feature the extensive Benaroya collection of studio glass as well as TAM’s own collection of studio glass, which was started in 1971. TAM is located in the heart of Tacoma’s vibrant Museum District which consists of six museums including the Museum of Glass, a frequent collaborator.


ADMISSION – $18 Adult, $15 Student/Senior (65+), $40 Family (2 adults and up to four children age 6-18), Children 5 and under free every day. Children 18 and under free every Saturday. TAM Members; active duty military, reservists, veterans, and their families always free.

Tacoma Art Museum


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