Adams administration announces capital funding for cultural organizations across Queens

Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Laurie Cumbo joins Queens Borough President Donovan Richards at the Noguchi Museum to announce capital funding for arts institutions. (Photo by Don Stahl)

Leaders from several Queens cultural institutions gathered together on Aug. 10 at the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City, where NYC Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Laurie Cumbo announced $4.5 million in capital funding to support the restoration and renovation of Isamu Noguchi’s Studio.

The project will allow public access for the first time in the museum’s history and preserve the living spaces designed by Noguchi, new amenities for visitors, as well as the construction of a new facility for the storage and study of its collection. As part of her ongoing five borough tour, Cumbo also detailed investment for other institutions including Queens Museum, Flux Factory, New York Hall of Science, Queens Theatre the Poppenhusen Institute and the Queens Botanical Gardens.

“The extraordinary diversity and energy of Queens is reflected in its cultural organizations, and we’re thrilled to invest in these projects that will give local residents and visitors from all over access to the remarkable cultural facilities they deserve,” Cumbo said. “From this exciting new project at Noguchi Museum that will open up the legendary artist’s living space to the public for the first time, to the Queens Museum’s ongoing expansion, and many more — these projects are part of the city’s long-term investment in the cultural community of Queens and across all five boroughs.”

Mayor Eric Adams has invested $127 million in capital support across the five boroughs which, along with funding from the City Council and borough presidents, brings a total of more than $220 million in funding to 70 cultural groups citywide.

“I’m thrilled that the Noguchi Museum, along with many other incredible Queens cultural institutions have received this historic funding from Mayor Eric Adams,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards. “With the mayor’s investment and my $3 million allocation for a new storage lab and study center, the Noguchi Museum will be able to expand and improve upon the stellar experience it offers to visitors.”

Noguchi Museum Director Brett Littman said he was grateful for the support and investment from the Adams administration and the borough president.

“Since its founding in 1985, the Noguchi Museum has presented exhibitions and programs that reach audiences throughout Queens, as well as around the world,” Littman said. “Our capital project will enable public access to Isamu Noguchi’s Studio for the first time in its history, open a new cafe and shop for visitors, and create dedicated space to preserve, protect and research Noguchi’s art and archive.”

The new investment to the Queens Theatre will enable a much-needed upgrade to its Claire Shulman Theater.

“We are grateful for the city of New York’s historic, forward-looking and generous capital investments in arts and cultural institutions throughout the boroughs and especially in Queens,” said Queens Theatre Executive Director Taryn Sacramone. “For Queens Theatre, this funding will enable us to do a transformational renovation of our main stage — the Claire Shulman Theater — creating a modernized space with increased accessibility which will benefit artists, community partners and audiences for decades to come.”

The investment will allow the Queens Botanical Garden to activate an underutilized section along College Point Boulevard.

“We are thrilled to receive critical capital funds which will facilitate the creation of a beautiful new Pavilion Garden,” said Queens Botanical Garden Executive Director Evie Hantzopoulos. “This new garden will activate an underutilized section of QBG along College Point Boulevard, and bring opportunities for visitors of all ages and backgrounds to engage with nature, learn about sustainable gardening and find peaceful respite in busy downtown Flushing.”

Queens Museum President and Executive Director Sally Tallant said the city’s investment in the borough’s cultural infrastructure would elevate spirits, support families and revitalize the economy.

“We thank the Adams administration for sharing this vision with us and for supporting our work as we develop a multilingual, intergenerational arts and culture learning center — a Queens Children’s Museum — as a part of the completion of the Queens Museum,” Tallant said.