January 25, 2022

University of Utah: Marriott Library and Utah Museum of Fine Arts Awarded $500,000 Grant from Mellon Foundation

From the University of Utah:

The J. Willard Marriott Library and the Utah Museum of Fine Arts at the University of Utah have been awarded a $500,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The grant will provide partial funding for a four-year collaborative project that will establish the U as a global resource hub for artists and scholars studying the West and create access to the U’s remarkable collections, resources and knowledge.

The project entitled “Landscape, Land Art, and the American West: A Joint Research and Engagement Initiative of the Utah Museum of Fine Arts and the J. Willard Marriott Library,” will transform how the library and museum work together. As leaders in the region for scholarly research, exhibition design and collections care, the library and museum curate extensive – but  separate – holdings related to environmental and cultural histories of the Intermountain West. Through this new initiative, these collections will be linked in ways that enable students, faculty and researchers to systematically mine content for innovative learning and teaching.



We are delighted that the Mellon Foundation recognizes the tremendous opportunity this collaboration represents and the capability of the library and museum to deliver and lead transformative change,” said Ruth Watkins, university senior vice president for academic affairs.

The award is the largest Mellon Foundation grant the U has ever received and the only Mellon grant the U has been awarded in the arts and humanities. The half-million-dollar grant will be matched by $200,000 from the Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and additional support from across campus, including from the colleges of Fine Arts, Health, Humanities, and Mines and Earth Sciences.


Together the library and museum will develop shared technology to promote the discovery and use of both collections and create initiatives to support faculty and student research. They will also appoint two joint positions to research the collections and increase communication, collaboration and the use of these key resources.

The collections research curator position and the art and archive metadata librarian position are posted on the University of Utah website at employment.utah.edu.

This one-time grant is intended to support structural change that will sustain the UMFA and Marriott Library collaboration beyond the grant period, which runs from Jan. 1, 2018, through 2021.

Read the Complete Announcement

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.