On Friday, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art announced major reductions in staffing to lessen its expenses during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The 135 on-call staff who have been paid for canceled work since the museum’s closure to the public on March 14 will be laid off on April 9. Nearly 200 regular staff will be furloughed or have their schedules reduced beginning May 1. The museum expects to be closed to the public through at least the end of June.
In an exclusive statement provided to KQED, SFMOMA president Neal Benezra explained the museum faces an expected revenue loss of $8 million through June 30, an estimated 40% drop in operating revenues since the coronavirus pandemic hit the Bay Area. A smaller team will keep the museum operating during the furlough period, with Benezra and other members of the museum’s leadership taking pay cuts during this time.
“We have been fortunate to be able to keep our staff on full compensation for seven weeks after we closed, but we now have to look to the future and make the painful decision to temporarily decrease the size of our team,” Benezra’s statement reads.