Partner Loan


Art Bridges Partner Loan Network

A new initiative to support long-term collection sharing partnerships among U.S. museums of all sizes

Group at Art Bridges Collection Loan Partnership Convening April 2022


The Art Bridges Partner Loan Network is a new initiative dedicated to bringing American art out of museum vaults and on view in communities across the United States. At museums across the U.S., a significant portion of their collections sit in storage. The collections include important works of art that are inaccessible to the public. While most museums would like to get art out of storage and on view, financial constraints and staff capacity impact their ability to lend artwork to other museums. Now, the Art Bridges Collection Loan Partnership presents a new lending model that allows museums to circulate their collections.

This initiative aims to increase works of art by BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and women artists in museum galleries and fill in gaps in museum collections.


  • Bring artwork out of storage and into new communities
  • Increase works of art by BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and women artists in museum galleries
  • Fill gaps in museum collections
  • Expand access and increase transparency of the process for borrowing artworks among museums of all sizes
  • Foster community engagement and bring new audiences to borrowing museums

How It Works

Institutions with deep collections identify selections from their collections in consultation with Art Bridges. Those works are prepared for distribution to other museums in groups of 5-7 artworks. Art Bridges coordinates loan agreements, insurance, condition reporting, crating, packing, and shipping at no cost to borrowing museums.

These long-term loans last at least 24 months, after which artwork groupings travel to another borrowing museum.

The lending museums provide label copy and reference images of the artworks selected. Additional interpretive materials (such as extended text, major themes, interpretation, and historic programming information) can be developed in partnership with Art Bridges and the borrowing institution.

To learn more, view our step-by-step guides on Learning & Engagement funding, collection loan projects, and traveling exhibitions.


Art Bridges supports these partnerships through direct funding payments to offset hard and soft costs. In addition, lending museums may contribute resources such as curatorial and interpretive support.

Borrowing museums are also encouraged to apply for an Art Bridges Learning & Engagement award to support programming and community outreach.

Museum visitors look at Hughie Lee Smith Our Walls

Ready to Borrow?

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