The Knoxville Museum of Art Receives Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

May 21, 2019

May 21, 2019 (Knoxville, TN) –  The Knoxville Museum of Art recently received a $40,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for the exhibition Beauford Delaney: Through the Unusual Door February 7-May 10, 2020 with an accompanying catalogue.

National Endowment for the Arts Acting Chairman Mary Anne Carter has approved more than $80 million in grants as part of the Arts Endowment’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2019.  Included in this announcement is an Art Works grant of $40,000 to the Knoxville Museum of Art for the Beauford Delaney: Through the Unusual Door exhibition. Art Works is the Arts Endowment’s principal grantmaking program. The agency received 1,592 Art Works applications for this round of grantmaking, and will award 977 grants in this category.

“These awards, reaching every corner of the United States, are a testament to the artistic richness and diversity in our country,” said Mary Anne Carter, acting chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. “Organizations such as the Knoxville Museum of Art are giving people in their community the opportunity to learn, create, and be inspired.”

The 40+ paintings, works on paper, documentary photographs, and letters in Through the Unusual Door examine the 35-year relationship between Knoxville-born painter Beauford Delaney (Knoxville 1901-1979 Paris) and writer James Baldwin (New York 1924-1987 Saint-Paul-de-Vence, France) and the ways their ongoing intellectual exchange shaped one another’s creative output and worldview.

According to KMA Executive Director David Butler, “Beauford Delaney:  Through the Unusual Door” is one of the most important and ambitious exhibitions the museum has ever organized.  It represents a first opportunity to showcase our rich Delaney holdings—the KMA owns more Delaney works than any public institution in the world—in the context of significant works on loan from collections across the country and through the lens of Delaney’s long relationship with writer and Civil Rights activist James Baldwin.  As an institution that celebrates the rich and diverse visual legacy of East Tennessee, we are immensely proud and honored to focus the world’s attention on the most important artist Knoxville ever produced.”

For more information on this National Endowment for the Arts grant announcement, visit

The Knoxville Museum of Art
The Knoxville Museum of Art celebrates the art and artists of East Tennessee, presents new art and new ideas, serves and educates diverse audiences, and enhances Knoxville’s quality of life. The museum is located in downtown Knoxville at 1050 World’s Fair Park and is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday 10am–5pm, and Sunday 1pm-5pm. Admission and parking are free. For more information, contact Angela Thomas at 865.934.2034 or visit