We cannot take stock of the year past without reflecting on the shocking events at the Boston Marathon in April. In the days and weeks that followed, Bostonians displayed the strength and resiliency for which this city has always been known.
Whenever the people of Boston have faced difficult challenges, the MFA has welcomed them as a place of solace and inspiration. The day after the horrific attack, we opened our doors free of charge to all. More than 2,000 visitors came that day, among them many runners. One visitor wrote, “Thank you MFA, for giving us a sanctuary where so much beauty, calmness, and peace is expressed and felt!” At Memorial Day, with the generous support of the Vance Wall Foundation and MFA Associates and Senior Associates, we organized a free Community weekend when we hosted nearly 30,000 visitors. Visitors were invited to create a collage representing what they love about Boston—and for many, it was the MFA. As a gesture of sympathy and solidarity, our friends at the Metropolitan Museum of Art reached out to us and kindly lent three masterworks by Winslow Homer; Frederic, Lord Leighton; and Édouard Manet.
In my 19 years as director, I have never been more proud of the efforts of the whole MFA family during this past year. It has been a busy and rewarding time—our achievements are directly linked to the generosity of our donors, to our extraordinary dedication of our staff and volunteers, and the unending support from our remarkable city. For that, I remain profoundly grateful and our resolute message remains: We are Boston Strong, and the MFA is at the heart of a strong Boston!
Ann and Graham Gund Director
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston