In 1992, the Vogels formed a partnership with the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., placing in its custody more than 1,100 works of art as gifts or promised gifts. As the Vogels continued to acquire works of art, it became unfeasible to gift their entire collection to any one museum, leading to the development of the Fifty Works for Fifty States project. This endeavor, which received support from both the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, allowed the Vogels to place 2,500 works of art, including drawings, paintings, sculptures, prints, and photographs by 177 artists, in the collections of museums throughout the United States. The Vogels selected venues that they had built relationships with through exhibitions and affiliations, or, as in the case of the Buffalo AKG Art Museum, in cities that were of significance to them. (Dorothy Vogel was born in Elmira, New York, and attended college at the University at Buffalo.)
The Vogels’ generous gift to the museum included works by many artists who entered our collection for the first time, as well as works that enhance existing holdings. The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection at the Buffalo AKG includes works by Richard Artschwager, Robert Barry, Lynda Benglis, Charles Clough, Koki Doktori, R. M. Fischer, Richard Francisco, Don Hazlitt, Gene Highstein, Bill Jensen, Tobi Kahn, Steve Keister, Alain Kirlli, Mark Kostabi, Wendy Lehman, Michael Lucero, Joseph Nechvatal, Richard Nonas, Larry Poons, Lucio Pozzi, Edda Renouf, Judy Rifka, Barbara Schwartz, Darryl Trivieri, and Richard Tuttle.
Fifty Works for Fifty States is a joint initiative of the Trustees of the Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection and the National Gallery of Art, with generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, 2009.