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MetLife Foundation Directs Corporate Art Funds to Underserved Creatives

$1.875 million in proceeds from sale of iconic murals gifted to New York City-based programs that support diverse young artists

In 1940, MetLife contacted renowned painter and illustrator N.C. Wyeth with a proposal: Create a large-scale mural series to grace the walls of its headquarters, then located at One Madison Avenue. The ambitious collection, entitled The New England Series, was Wyeth’s last commission before his death in 1945, when his son, Andrew, and his son-in-law, John McCoy, took on the balance of the project.

For decades, MetLife employees enjoyed a front-row view of art history. Today, the global insurer is sustaining its long-standing commitment to the arts and cultural community by investing in a young generation of historically marginalized artists.

Three of the murals – The Coming of the Mayflower (N.C. Wyeth), The Return of the Mayflower (N.C. Wyeth), and Fishermen in a Dory (Andrew Wyeth and John McCoy) – recently sold for $1.875 million, and MetLife Foundation will direct the funds to three New York City-based organizations focused on nurturing the creative expression of underrepresented artists:

  • $625,000 to the Lower Eastside Girls Club in support of its Alphabet City Art School, a multi-pronged visual arts program that includes art school classes and workshops, arts enrichment including mentoring programs, and community engagement.
  • $625,000 to the Harlem School of the Arts in support of free workshops, tuition assistance, and programs focused on painting, drawing, digital art design, and animation.
  • $625,000 to the Urban Arts Partnership in support of its School of Interactive Arts, which teaches students how to create their own video games with original art, music, and storytelling elements.

Collectively, these organizations reach students across New York City’s five boroughs with arts programming that otherwise may not be available to them.

“MetLife Foundation’s goal is to break down barriers and expand opportunity so that more people can pursue their dreams – and no one dreams bigger than young artists,” said Mike Zarcone, executive vice president and head of Corporate Affairs for MetLife and chairman of MetLife Foundation. “These organizations do so much more than put paintbrushes in the hands of students. They give them a powerful platform to amplify their voices and use their creative gifts to positively impact the world.”

To learn more about how MetLife Foundation supports communities around the world through grants, impact investments, and employee volunteerism, visit

About MetLife

MetLife, Inc. (NYSE: MET), through its subsidiaries and affiliates (“MetLife”), is one of the world’s leading financial services companies, providing insurance, annuities, employee benefits and asset management to help individual and institutional customers build a more confident future. Founded in 1868, MetLife has operations in more than 40 markets globally and holds leading positions in the United States, Japan, Latin America, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. For more information, visit

About MetLife Foundation

At MetLife Foundation, we are committed to expanding opportunities for low- and moderate-income people around the world. We partner with nonprofit organizations and social enterprises to create financial health solutions and build stronger communities, while engaging MetLife employee volunteers to help drive impact. Our financial health work has reached more than 17.3 million low- and moderate-income individuals in 42 countries. Learn more at MetLife Foundation.

MetLife Foundation directs corporate art funds to underserved creatives


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