On Monday, the Rasmuson Foundation announced its biggest grant ever– $12 million to the Anchorage Museum. That donation is being matched by the Rasmuson family. In total, it’s a $24 million dollar gift.


Rasmuson Foundation President Diane Kaplan said funding the project honors a family legacy.


Much of what you see at the museum today is credited to former banker and Mayor Elmer Rasmuson.


“He believed that a great city needed to have a great museum,” Kaplan said.


But much of the art housed at the museum is not on display because there just isn’t room. Together the Rasmuson Foundation and Rasmuson family are funding a major expansion.


“There will be 25,000 square feet of additional gallery space. Through that space we hope to tell the full story of the art of the north,” Museum Director Julie Decker said.


Construction on the two-story addition will begin next month. Once complete in September of 2017, there will be more space for changing exhibits and a permanent gallery for pieces currently in storage.


“It allows us to be aspirational and to look forward,” Decker said.


The Rasmuson Foundation and family will pay for the project over the next several years.