Visual Arts Center of New Jersey Receives Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities

National Endowment for the Humanities LogoSummit, NJ (May 22, 2023)—The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey (VACNJ) recently received a matching grant of $150,000 from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) that will assist in the renovation of VACNJ’s Main and Mitzi & Warren Eisenberg Galleries. This grant award was part of the more than $35 million dollars recently awarded by the NEH for 258 humanities projects nationwide.

“The funds the Art Center will receive as part of this challenge grant are essential for the planned renovations of our museum galleries,” said Melanie Cohn, VACNJ Executive Director. “They will enable us to create an enhanced visitor experience while prioritizing accessibility and ensuring a more inclusive and enriching experience for all. We extend our heartfelt thanks to the National Endowment for the Humanities for recognizing the critical importance of this project, and we look forward to transforming the VACNJ into an even more vibrant hub for the arts, education, and community engagement.”

Funds from the grant will support a series of projects within VACNJ’s overall renovation plan, including:

  • repositioning the entrance to the Eisenberg Gallery to improve sightlines and connection to the Main Gallery;
  • updating the ceilings in both the Main and Eisenberg Galleries with an energy-efficient, flexible lighting system;
  • installing motorized black-out shades on the two Main Gallery windows to allow for improved light control and to better protect artwork, historic documents, and heritage-based items; and
  • updating integrated Main Gallery speakers for use during special events and exhibitions.

These improvements will allow for the expansion of humanities-based programs that will serve diverse audiences, including communities of color and others who have been historically underrepresented and marginalized by traditional museums. They will also allow for the innovation of exhibitions with humanities components and improve the overall visitor experience.

About the National Endowment for the Humanities
Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at