Hi! I’m Thomas Canavan. Some friends and I have created a soon-to-be-non-profit crowdfunding platform dedicated to museums and cultural institutions. We call it Museum Force. We’ve also created Plinth, the Official Blog for Museum Force.
Who likes history (We do!)? Continue reading to learn some!
For us, December 24, 2012 is where this all began, here in the New York Times article In Need, French Museums Turn to Masses, Chapeaux in Hand.
For as little as a single euro even the most ordinary art connoisseur can join the fund-raising fraternité that is working to restore the dome of the Panthéon…
So that was it! One euro is around $1.35. Let’s multiply $1.35 by each person living in Washington D.C. and let’s say all of those people donated the equivalent to one euro, we could’ve just raised roughly $850,000. That is amazing! And that is crowdfunding.
We began researching crowdfunding platforms and quickly realized that there wasn’t one designed and targeted toward non-profit museums and cultural institutions. As a group of arts administrators, we all agreed museums would see better results from crowdfunding if they were listed separately from projects related to non-museum activities. So, we decided to create one!
Museum Force is born!
Did you know originally, the “Force” of Museum Force was an acronym that stood for Funding Operations, Research, Collections and Exhibitions? Guess what? Everyone hates acronyms. News to me, so we kept the “Force”, but dropped the acronym. We incorporated our organization just after St. Patrick’s Day of 2013 and filed for our tax-exempt status shortly thereafter.
This is our mission:
To connect donors with museums and mission driven organizations, whose work is dedicated to providing education and enjoyment through their programs and public exhibitions.
How simple is that? We’re matchmakers! You, meet Museum; Museum, meet You.
Why hasn’t Museum Force launched yet?
As we began working to identify the components we needed in order to collect $1.35 from every American through museumforce.org, we discovered it wasn’t going to be as simple as we hoped. I’ll spare you the details, but we agreed it was such a large endeavor, we wouldn’t move forward until we attained our tax-exempt status. Good news, we heard from IRS that our application was not rejected! So, we wait again. But as you might imagine, we don’t like sitting around not doing anything. We decided that we would pour our combined efforts in to creating an additional platform dedicated to museums and cultural institutions, but this time it would be in the form of our blog, Plinth.
Ahh, our Plinth. According to Thomas Canavan, “This is the best name for a museum blog I’ve ever heard of.” It is our avenue to you, paved streets lined with $1.35’s. Plinth is a multi-authored blog written by museum professionals from around the country who report on museums far and wide in order to celebrate their accomplishments, successes, challenges and innovative programs. Through reading Plinth we anticipate you will learn more about museums than ever before and will be inspired to either put what they do in to practice at your own museum, or simply discover a new museum to visit, enjoy and support.
In addition to the regularly scheduled articles from our amazing contributors, from time to time we’ll also include different features from either myself, our board of directors or guest contributors. If you know a museum that would enjoy highlighting some of their innovative programs here at Plinth or if you’d like to be a guest contributor, leave a reply below.
Read, Enjoy, Support and…spread the word.
All the best!
Founder, Museum Force
In our next issue …
Staff and Board of Director Introductions – Secrets Revealed!
Thomas Canavan is the Founder and Executive Director of Museum Force.
Plinth is dedicated to promoting and highlighting innovative and educational programming within museums throughout the country. Plinth was created by Museum Force, a soon-to-be-non-profit crowdfunding organization dedicated to museums and cultural institutions.