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$1.5M pledged to finish Minnesota Museum of American Art in St. Paul

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A piece by Native American artist George Morrison
A piece by Native American artist George Morrison hangs in the Minnesota Museum of American Art's gallery on Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018.
Evan Frost | MPR News file

Minnesota Museum of American Art leaders on Sunday unveiled a $1.5 million donation to help complete the museum’s permanent home in downtown St. Paul.

The commitment by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation will help build out the museum’s space in the historic Pioneer Endicott building. The first phase of that facility opened in December last year.

The museum, known as the “M,” said it will continue to feature local and regional artwork showcasing Minnesota’s diverse communities and their cultures.

“We’re committed to creating a space where all are included and welcome,” said Kristin Makholm, the museum’s executive director. “As St. Paul’s only major art museum, the M is woven into the fabric of daily life, right in the heart of downtown St. Paul.”

Further construction begins this fall as part of the museum’s continued expansion, which will include additional galleries and renovated offices. Its new facilities are set to open in 2021.

With the Knight Foundation investment, the museum said it’s raised $25.2 million of its $28 million capital campaign.

The museum donation comes as part of the Knight Foundation’s continued investment in institutions around St. Paul, including $100,000 to the St. Paul Public Library and $100,000 to the Minnesota Opera.