The Avenir Foundation donated $5 million to update the conservation facility for the George Washington University Museum and Textile Museum, the University announced Thursday.
The facility, which will now be named the Avenir Foundation Conservation and Collections Resource Center, is located on the Virginia Science and Technology Campus. Officials will use the donation to purchase equipment for preserving items in the museum like a vacuum for cleaning the textiles gently and a microscope to study the weave structures of the items, according to a release.
The money will also go toward an endowment fund to hire and train conservation staff and cover other costs for the conservation lab in Virginia, the release stated.
The $5 million was given in two parts – partially in 2014 to purchase custom storage for the museum’s exhibits and for an endowed chair at the museum, and $2.19 million this March to create the Avenir Foundation Endowment for Textile Museum Conservation, according to the release.
The foundation, based in Colorado, supports projects in the arts and humanities, and has donated to the Textile Museum since 1994, the release stated.
John Wetenhall, the director of the GW and Textile museums, said in the release that the “significant” donation will be put toward the long-term preservation of the textiles.
“The textiles in our collections highlight the stories of diverse populations around the world,” he said in the release. “We are committed to preserving these textiles as we continue to showcase one of the world’s premiere collections of textiles.”