(New York, June 18, 2003) – National, regional, and foreign tourists spent a combined $220 million in New York City during their visits to see The Metropolitan Museum of Art's acclaimed winter exhibition Leonardo da Vinci, Master Draftsman, according to a Museum audience survey released today. The visitor spending generated an estimated $12 million in direct tax revenues for the City and State.
Attendance reached 401,000 for the landmark special exhibition, which was on view for a limited run of less than 10 weeks at the Metropolitan Museum from January 22 to March 30, 2003. The survey found that nearly two-thirds of the visitors traveled from outside the five boroughs of New York City – 22% from the metropolitan area outside New York City and 31% from other states in the nation – and spent a total of $220 million on lodging, food, and related expenses during their stays.
David E. McKinney, President of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, noted: "The remarkable attendance for the brief but extraordinary run of Leonardo da Vinci, Master Draftsman – the highest attended drawings show in the Metropolitan's 133-year history -- is a confirmation of our visitors' commitment to art and culture, and of the high quality of the exhibitions we present. Despite the general downturn in tourism to the City, the Metropolitan Museum continues to be a must-see destination, offering world-class exhibitions and unparalleled collections. We take pride in the revenue we help generate for New York during this difficult economic period."
The Museum's Office of Research and Evaluation conducted the survey under the leadership of Jeffrey K. Smith, Professor of Educational Statistics and Measurement, and Chair of the Department of Educational Psychology, Graduate School of Education, Rutgers University. Based on a random sampling of 541 visitors to the Metropolitan during the week of March 16, 2003, average per person expenditures while in the City were estimated at $559, with an additional $286 on shopping, with a total economic impact of $220 million.
Using a scale of 1 to 10 to determine how important seeing Leonardo was in their decision to visit New York City, more than 30% of the visitors surveyed in the study gave the exhibition a maximum rating of 10; and 53% gave a rating of 7 or higher. The economic impact is estimated to be $121 million for just those individuals who indicated that seeing the exhibition was important in their decision to visit New York City.
Two out of three out-of-town visitors to the exhibition indicated that they would be staying overnight in the City, and 66% of those individuals reported that they would stay in a hotel or motel. The median length of stay in New York for Leonardo visitors staying overnight was four days. Using the standard estimate of 10% (combining sales and hotel taxes), the direct tax benefit to New York City and New York State from all visitors is estimated at $22 million, and $12 million for visitors who came to New York primarily to see the exhibition.
The exhibition was sponsored by Morgan Stanley, which is headquartered in New York City. Morgan Stanley Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Philip J. Purcell said, "Morgan Stanley is proud to have helped the Metropolitan Museum attract so many visitors to this great city, where thousands of our employees live and work."
The Leonardo da Vinci, Master Draftsman survey was the first conducted by the Metropolitan to evaluate the economic impact of a special exhibition since the spring of 2001. The analysis of the data collected from the Leonardo survey concluded that a high percentage of visitors to the exhibition came from New York City: more than one-third (36%) of the visitors were residents of the City's five boroughs. Consistent with the decline in foreign tourism since September 11, 2001, international visitors comprised just 12% of those who attended the exhibition.
Completed during a period when Leonardo and the exhibition Manet/Velázquez: The French Taste for Spanish Painting (March 4 through June 29, 2003) were on view concurrently, the survey revealed that more than one-half of the people who participated in the study indicated that they had planned their visit to the Metropolitan primarily to enable them to see both exhibitions.
When asked what other cultural and tourist activities they planned to engage in during their visit to New York City, shopping (53%) and dining (51%) were cited most by visitors to the Leonardo exhibition. Visitors also reported plans to attend the theater and concerts, go sightseeing, travel to tourist attractions and landmarks, and visit other New York museums.
The Museum does not require extra admission fees for special exhibitions. A single recommended admission fee provides full access to both special exhibitions and the Metropolitan's more than two million works of art.
The Metropolitan's display of Leonardo da Vinci, Master Draftsman was the first comprehensive exhibition of his drawings ever presented in America. Organized by Carmen C. Bambach, Curator, and George R. Goldner, Drue Heinz Chairman, both of the Metropolitan's Department of Drawings and Prints, the exhibition included loans from 25 private and public collections in Europe and North America.
Additional support for the exhibition was provided by the National Endowment for the Arts.
An indemnity was granted by the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.
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