KING TUT EXHIBITION AT DALLAS MUSEUM OF ART MAKES HISTORY
WITH HIGHEST ATTENDANCE ON RECORD
– DMA Visitorship Soars to One Million for the First Time –
DALLAS, TX, June 15, 2009—Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs completed its run at the Dallas Museum of Art as the most popular exhibition in the Museum’s history, drawing in 664,000 ticketholders since its October 2008 opening. Additionally, the Museum reached a historic high in attendance, welcoming for the first time more than one million visitors to date in the 2009 fiscal year.
The King Tut exhibition, which was accompanied by more than 500 special programs, brought in thousands of first-time visitors from throughout the region and nearly 110,000 students to experience the Museum and its encyclopedic collections. Over the course of the final “Mummy Marathon” weekend, May 15–May 17, more than 47,000 visitors enjoyed extended hours at the DMA for round-the-clock exhibition viewing and additional Tut-related programming.
“The tremendous response to Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs has made it an unprecedented popular success, both for the Dallas community and for the DMA,” said Bonnie Pitman, The Eugene McDermott Director of the Dallas Museum of Art. “We are proud to have brought this remarkable exhibition to Dallas, providing a rare opportunity for our community and for the entire Southwest to view these incredible works of art from ancient Egypt. The exhibition drew many to the DMA for the first time and has inspired and captured the imaginations of hundreds of thousands of visitors.”
According to Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau President and CEO Phillip Jones, the economic impact of the exhibition on Dallas was significant, with more than 10,000 room nights purchased by visitors to Tut through hotel packages. Travelers from all 50 states and a host of international destinations came to Dallas to enjoy the exhibition, with strong showings from the neighboring states of Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and New Mexico and throughout North Texas.
Since the opening of the exhibition, DMA attendance has soared to include more than a million visitors to date in the 2009 fiscal year, the highest number on record for the 106-year-old institution. During the exhibition’s run, almost 10,000 new members joined the Museum, bringing the DMA’s membership total to a historic high of more than 26,000 (households). Concurrent with its presentation of the King Tut show, the Museum highlighted connections to its important collections by offering free audio tours, specially created online materials to provide parallels to the themes presented in the exhibition and works in the DMA’s encyclopedic collections, and comprehensive programming. Nearly 140,000 visitors participated in King Tut exhibition-related programs, such as Late Nights at the Dallas Museum of Art, TUTorials, performances, lectures and films.
The exhibition also attracted thousands of schoolchildren and welcomed 5,400 sixth-grade students from the Dallas Independent School District, who study Egypt as part of their curriculums, at no cost. Their tickets were purchased with proceeds from the “Fit for a Pharaoh: Tut ’Til Ten” exclusive packages offered through the DMA.
Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs is organized by National Geographic, Arts and Exhibitions International and AEG Exhibitions, with cooperation from the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities. Northern Trust was the presenting sponsor and American Airlines was the official airline of the exhibition. The Dallas engagement was presented in partnership with the Dallas Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The exhibition will now travel to San Francisco, where it will open at the de Young Museum on June 27.
About the Dallas Museum of Art
Located in the vibrant Arts District of downtown Dallas, Texas, the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) ranks among the leading art institutions in the country and is distinguished by its innovative exhibitions and groundbreaking educational programs. At the heart of the Museum and its programs is its encyclopedic collections, which encompass more than 23,000 works and span 5,000 years of history, representing a full range of world cultures. Established in 1903, the Museum today welcomes more than 600,000 visitors annually and acts as a catalyst for community creativity, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds with a diverse spectrum of programming, from exhibitions and lectures to concerts, literary readings and dramatic and dance presentations.
The Dallas Museum of Art is supported in part by the generosity of Museum members and donors and by the citizens of Dallas through the City of Dallas/Office of Cultural Affairs and the Texas Commission on the Arts.