A historic donation of $1.8 million to the Smithsonian Institute's National Museum of African Art from Oman, which has been described as the largest donation in the museum’s history would come as a relief for the revered facility.
Few months ago, The Smithsonian Institute indicated a state of financial distress when sources disclosed that the Washington base museum was frantically seeking donations to sustain the facility. In fact, one of its directors who was on a visit to Nigeria last few months ago was quoted as urging individual and groups in African to come to the rescue of the museum.
According to Washington Post and Al-Arabiya, the gift, which was announced on Wednesday will fund a series of programmes tagged “Connecting the Gems of the Indian Ocean: From Oman to East Africa.” It was disclosed that the programmmes will focus on Omani arts and culture and the links between cultures in East and North Africa and the Middle East.
The Museum was delighted as it noted that the gift is a significant milestone for the museum, which will celebrate its 50th anniversary in 2014..