2024 Failey Grants Awarded to Six Notable Institutions

Dec 7, 2023

The Decorative Arts Trust is pleased to offer support through Dean F. Failey Grants to six exceptional projects in our field, a record number of grantees for this esteemed program. In fact, the Trust received almost double the number of proposals as usual for this round of funding. 

The Andrew Jackson Foundation in Nashville, TN, will conserve and exhibit Sarah Yorke Jackson’s 1820–30 Spanish guitar attributed to Cabasse-Visnaire L’ainé that is currently on display in the Hermitage Mansion. The project will be led by Collections Manager Jennifer Schmidt and Collections Aide Haley Weltzien. 

The Brandywine Conservancy & Museum of Art in Chadds Ford, PA, will publish the catalogue for The Crafted World of Wharton Esherick exhibition. Wharton Esherick Museum (WEM) Director of Curatorial Affairs Emily Zilber will be the catalogue’s primary author, with essays by WEM Director of Interpretation and Research Holly Gore, Philadelphia-based design and culture writer Sarah Archer, and Philadelphia Museum of Art Assistant Curator in the Department of European Decorative Arts Colin Fanning. 

Fallingwater in Mill Run, PA, will restore 24 oversized blueprints of shop drawings for Frank Lloyd Wright’s built-ins and furniture as well as 28 blueprints of the guest house. Paper conservator Jayne Girold Holt will work with Hannah Cioccho, Fallingwater’s newly appointed Collections Manager and Archivist. 

Museo de las Americas in Denver, CO, plans to launch a digital resource focusing on a collection of Latin American textiles, which includes containers, clothing, and blankets. Curator of Collections Laura Beacom will work with a paid intern to photograph, digitize, and upload content to Bloomberg Connects and Google Arts and Culture. 

The Newport Historical Society in Newport, RI, will develop A Name, a Voice, a Life: The Black Newporters of the 17th–19th Centuries, an exhibition about how the lives of Africans and African Americans have been interpreted from the written record. The exhibition will be led by Collaborating Curator Zoe Hume and Project Director Kaela Bleho. 

The Tomaquag Museum in Exeter, RI, will conserve an 1840s Narragansett birchbark canoe, which was crafted by the great uncle of Ferris Dove, the Narragansett Chief Roaring Bull. Conservator Linda Nieuwenhuizen will perform a condition assessment, and Tomaquag Museum Archival Assistant and Narragansett Nation citizen Kathryn Cullen-Fry will document the history and community memories of the canoe, which will serve as a centerpiece of Tomaquag’s new visible storage facility. 

The Failey Grant program provides support for noteworthy research, exhibition, and conservation projects through the Dean F. Failey Fund, named in honor of the Trust’s late Governor. Each of these projects also incorporates contributions from an emerging scholar as part of the Decorative Arts Trust’s Emerging Scholars Program. Applications are due October 31 annually. Sign up for the e-newsletter and follow the Trust on Instagram and Facebook for updates on grant opportunities and announcements. Thank you to the Trust members and donors who help make these grants possible! 

About The Decorative Arts Trust Bulletin

Formerly known as the "blog,” the Bulletin features new research and scholarship, travelogues, book reviews, and museum and gallery exhibitions. The Bulletin complements The Magazine of the Decorative Arts Trust, our biannual members publication.


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