The Fishers and SFMOMA reached a verbal agreement in September 2009. The agreement was officially ratified by the museum in February 2010.
SFMOMA presented a major exhibition of the Fisher Collection in summer 2010. When the expansion is completed, works from the Fisher Collection will be on display at the museum, interwoven with works from SFMOMA's modern and contemporary holdings.
Seventy-five percent of the work on view in the expanded galleries will be drawn from the Fisher Collection and the other 25 percent will come from SFMOMA's collection; the works will be displayed side-by-side.
The collection will be on loan to the museum for 100 years, renewable thereafter for another 25 years. What happens next will be negotiated by the Fishers' descendants in collaboration with museum leadership at that time.
It offers a new model for museums to partner with major collectors in a way that satisfies patrons' natural desire to share their collections publicly, while allowing them to benefit from museums' curatorial expertise and encouraging them to make choices that will benefit future generations of museum visitors.
It is the educational and civic impact of SFMOMA's partnership with the Fisher family that makes it so unique. The Fisher Collection will be seen in a much richer context by being presented alongside SFMOMA's holdings. The Fishers are helping to make an already great public resource — SFMOMA — into a world leader for modern and contemporary art.
The Fisher Collection totals more than 1,100 works, including prints.
Don and Doris Fisher began collecting art in the 1970s, soon after the founding of the Gap. Although they initially collected primarily prints, the scope of their collection evolved with the success of their company.
Nerts, 1978, by Roy Lichtenstein.
Illustrations After El Lissitzky's 'Had Gadya' by Frank Stella. They bought it in 1984, the year it was made.
Don and Doris Fisher did much of their collecting without an art advisor.