The Foundation

Established in 1993, the Joan Mitchell Foundation is an artist-endowed non-profit organization. Sustaining Joan Mitchell's artistic legacy and fulfilling her vision to support and amplify the work of other artists are the cornerstones of the Foundation’s work.


The Joan Mitchell Foundation celebrates the life of abstract artist Joan Mitchell by expanding awareness of her pioneering work and fulfilling her wish to support and provide opportunities for visual artists. Through grants, residencies, and related initiatives, the Foundation advances the work of today’s artists and amplifies their essential contributions to communities around the world.

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Our Vision

The Foundation supports research, scholarship, and exhibitions to ensure Joan Mitchell is widely recognized as a significant artist. Her artwork is seen and studied comprehensively to establish richer understanding of her life and work.

The Foundation’s grants, residencies, and related initiatives recognize artistic excellence and elevate a wide range of visual artists and practices. We work to actively expand the visual arts to better reflect the diverse world in which we live.

The Foundation serves as an evolving example and resource for how an artist’s generosity can impact future generations of artists.

What We Value

Being Artist Centered
The Foundation was established by an artist for artists. We trust that artists know what they need to best support their practices, and we let their voices and feedback guide our work.

A Culture of Generosity
Joan Mitchell was generous to other artists during and beyond her lifetime. The Foundation carries forward her generosity by giving, sharing, and making connections with intention.

Commitment to Equity
We believe that our work is richer when diverse perspectives are fully engaged. Through ongoing inquiry, dialogue, and action on issues of equity, the Foundation strives to remove barriers to sustained artistic practice and careers in the visual arts.

About Us

Members of the Joan Mitchell Foundation Staff and Board of Directors, December 2019


The Joan Mitchell Foundation was founded in 1993, the year after the death of the artist Joan Mitchell. Mitchell's will specified that a foundation be established in her name to "aid and assist" visual artists.

An Artist-Endowed Foundation is funded through the artwork and assets of either a living artist or an artist’s estate.

The Foundation oversees and maintains a collection of Joan Mitchell’s work.  The sale of these paintings directly support the Foundation’s endowment, programs and grant making activities.

No, the Foundation is not allowed to solicit outside funding.

We occasionally mount special exhibitions at the Foundation’s offices in New York. For more information on exhibitions and public hours, see the Blog section of this site. Please note that we do not display Joan Mitchell's artwork in our office gallery.

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