The Museum of Biblical Art is closing its doors due to what officials characterized as insurmountable financial difficulties arising from the sale of its Manhattan home, reports The New York Times. The 18-year-old museum, which has been drawing record crowds for its current show of a Donatello sculpture from Florence's Duomo museum, will shut down when that exhibition closes on June 14.
The Museum of Biblical Art, which looks at Western art through a religious lens, was plunged into uncertainty when the American Bible Society, its landlord and original patron, sold the Broadway building earlier this year to a private developer. Museum Director Richard P. Townsend said a new home in Manhattan would have increased annual expenses by $1.5 million to $5 million, potentially more than the institution's current operating budget. He said efforts to build philanthropic support since his hiring in 2013 had not progressed enough to cover the additional costs.