The Museum of Biblical Art situated in Manhattan will be closing in June this year.
The closing of the Museum of Biblical Art will occur as a result of the sale of the American Bible Society building where the Museum was situated near Columbus Circle in Manhattan. In March 2014 it was announced the building will be sold and the Museum of Biblical Art society known as Mobia will be moving to Philadelphia.
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Even though the Museum made a splash with exhibition of rare Renaissance sculptures by Donatello this past winter season, the officials were unable to raise enough money. The winter exhibition was the largest attendance ever in the history of the museum yet the money was not enough to maintain place in a market-rate Manhattan.
The museum Director Richard P. Townsend revealed that the time frame was too tight. According to Townsend even the cheapest museum quality place in New York right now required at least an additional $1.4 million from their budget and even though the society tried to reach out to potential patrons, no new donors stepped forward.
The decision was announced on Tuesday and highlighted the competition faced by cultural organization with high rents in New York City. The Museum of Biblical Art was an institution where Biblical influence on art was examined. The museum had a small staff and showcased exhibitions ranging from 400th anniversary of the King James Bible to the works of glass maker Louis Comfort Tiffany.
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The Museum of Biblical Art only paid Mobia $1 per year as rent. Mobia is a 199 year old organization and has an average annual budget of $2.8 million. The Donatello show currently running in the Museum of Biblical Art will close on the 14th of June to the public and on the 300th of June the Museum will stop operating.