The Institute's Newsmakers
January 9, 2017
Institute Alumna Alison Gass Named Director of the Smart Museum of Art
The University of Chicago announced today that Alison Gass has been appointed the Dana Feitler Director of the Smart Museum of Art. Starting May 1, Gass will lead the museum’s exhibitions, collaborative projects, and public and educational programs.
Since 2014, Gass has been the chief curator and associate director for exhibitions and collections at the Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University. She also served as acting director of the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University, where she created a residency for artists focusing on ideas about land, food, and natural resources. Gass has also worked as a curator for the San Francisco Museum of Art and a teacher at the California College of the Arts and City College in New York.
September 28, 2016
Institute Alumna Ileana Selejan's Charlotte Brooks exhibition featured in TIME Magazine
Charlotte Brooks’ career is the subject of a new exhibit at the Davis Museum at Wellesley College. Charlotte Brooks at LOOK: 1951–1971 will be on view through Dec. 18.
“Within the male-dominated world of photojournalism and commercial photography during the postwar period in the U.S., Brooks was a pioneer,” Ileana Selejan, a Curatorial Fellow in Photography at the Davis, said in a statement about the show.
July 26, 2016
The Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts Appoints Institute Alumna Yulin Lee Director of the Museum
The Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts (KMFA) is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr. Yulin Lee as its new director. Regarded as one of the most forward-thinking figures in Taiwan’s art scene today, Lee is a curator, critic, art historian, and artistic director whose work in public institutions, universities, and the private sector over the past two decades has helped to bring contemporary Taiwanese art to the global stage. She assumed her new role on July 28, 2016.
June 1, 2016
Institute Alumna Adrian Sudhalter brings "Dadaglobe Reconstructed" to the Musem of Modern Art
The Wall Street Journal reviewed IFA alumna Adrian Sudhalter's exhibition "Dadaglobe Reconstructed" while it was in Zurich earlier this year. The exhibition opens on June 12th, 2016 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. An excerpt:
As assembled by art historian Adrian Sudhalter, the intimate exhibit, which will travel to New York’s Museum of Modern Art in June, is an incredible feat of curatorship and research. The variety of artists who submitted drawings, photos, photomontages, poems and collages is enormous, from the movement’s key exponents in Berlin (Hannah Höch, George Grosz, John Heartfield) and Paris (André Breton, Marcel Duchamp, Jean Cocteau) to De Stijl founder Theo van Doesburg (who used the pseudonym I.K. Bonset) and the French-American composer Edgard Varèse. Constantin Brancusi and Joseph Stella are possibly the two least likely artists Tzara solicited. The show’s generously annotated catalog (also edited by Ms. Sudhalter) is the first-ever edition of “Dadaglobe,” nearly a century after Tzara proposed what he referred to as “The Greatest Standard Work in the World.” Read more
May 18, 2016
Milwaukee Art Museum names Institute Alumna Marcelle Polednik Director
Following recent news that the Milwaukee Art Museum had received an $8 million endowment to fund a new directorship, the museum has announced the appointment of Dr. Marcelle Polednik as the first Donna and Donald Baumgartner director following a rigorous national search. via Art News
Add Marcelle to a list of Institute alumni who have impressive achievements in 2016. Stay up to date with our recent alumni achievements here, and search our intereactive map to locate the current employment status of over 1,000 active alumni.
April 26, 2016
Marvin Trachtenberg awarded the 2016 I Tatti Mongan Prize
Professor Marvin Trachtenberg will be presented with the I Tatti Mongan Prize on May 26, 2016 at 6.00pm, when he will give his Laureate Lecture on “Architecture and the Body in the Renaissance”.
This talk explores the relationship between premodern concepts of the body and the experience of architecture. It is occasioned by a problem in the current terms of architectural understanding. Despite the advent of post-modernist aesthetics and notions of embodied perception, the study of Renaissance architecture remains closely tied to formalism and the analysis of buildings in purely “optical” abstract terms. The limitations of this interpretive paradigm are revealed in studying the authorship question of the Pazzi Chapel. Viewed closely in the formalist lens, the Chapel seems not only to lose its Brunelleschian authorship but to shrink into a second-rate work of architecture. How are we to resolve the contradiction between this analytic reduction and the powerful impression that the Chapel nevertheless makes in “ordinary” viewing? A reconsideration of the building-as-body syndrome in Renaissance architectural thought and practice suggests new categories of analysis. Through these concepts not only is the Pazzi Chapel seen in a new light as a remarkable work in itself, but it is revealed as the avatar of an important unrecognized architectural current of the quattrocento. Read more
March 24, 2016
The Modern Degas You Haven’t Seen
IFA alumnus Karl Buchberg, and senior curator at The Museum of Modern Art, co-organized “A Strange New Beauty,” an exhibition of Degas monotypes currently on view in New York. The New York Times' Roberta Smith gives the exhibition an excellent review. An excerpt:
“A Strange New Beauty” brings a new logic and coherence to Degas’s experimentation. It also reveals his monotypes as early signs of the 20th-century’s waves of nonacademic figuration — from the Fauves to German Expressionists to American artists like David Park — and abstraction itself. Most of all, it makes the past feel alive and useful, perhaps the most you can ask of any historical show. Read more
March 14, 2016
IFA Alumna Alexandra Munroe Featured in the New York Times
In this piece for the New York Times, Edward M. Gomez considers IFA alumna Alexandra Munroe, the senior curator of Asian art at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York and its first “senior adviser, global arts,” "one of the most visibly active and influential scholars who have taken a transnational approach to her work." The article details a "newer, so-called transnational approach" to telling this story of Modern art in museums, and Alexandra Munroe is on the cutting edge.
March 14, 2016
Rediscovering Daubigny, an Unsung Influence on the Impressionists
IFA alumna Lynne Ambrosini, the director of collections and exhibitions and curator of European art at the Taft Museum of Art in Cincinnati, is interviewed in the New York Times about her exhibition on the evolution of the 19th-century French artist Charles François Daubigny. An excerpt:
“I know the show will be very revealing,” said Lawrence W. Nichols, a senior curator at the Toledo Museum of Art, which is lending both its sole Daubigny and one of its two van Gogh paintings. “I’m glad, and so is the profession glad to see it come to fruition.” Read more
April 25, 2016
Phoebe Dent Weil Receives 2016 St. Louis Visionary Award
IFA Alumna Phoebe Dent Weil Receives 2016 St. Louis Visionary Award for Major Contribution to the Arts. The St. Louis Visionary Awards celebrate the passion, determination, and imagination of six local women who daily dive into the trenches to improve our city’s arts culture by stimulating artistic ability via education, philanthropy activism and public engagement.
To say that 2016 Visionary Award winner Phoebe Dent Weil is a Major Contributor to the Arts is a bit of an understatement. In addition spending over five decades preserving important works of art for future generations, she pioneered St. Louis sculpture conservation, trained docents for the Saint Louis Art Museum, taught her craft to a new generation and advanced the study of technical art history. She’s also sponsored operas and gotten closer to a Caravaggio than most people can only dream of. Read more
February 29, 2016
Professor Meredith Martin Receives ACLS Collaborative Research Fellowship
Meredith Martin, Associate Professor at the Institute, received a 2016 collaborative research fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies. Martin's collaborator is Gillian L. Weiss of Case Western Reserve University. About the project:
Mediterranean maritime art, and the forced labor on which it depended, was fundamental to the politics and propaganda of France’s King Louis XIV, who ruled from 1643 to 1715. Yet most studies of French art in this period continue to focus on Paris and Versailles, a fact that is all the more surprising given the recent scholarly emphasis on mobility, cross-cultural exchange, and transoceanic perspectives. By examining a wide range of artistic productions—ship design, artillery sculpture, medals, paintings, and prints—this project, aims to draw attention to the neglected genre of Mediterranean maritime art and to the varieties of forced labor integral to its creation. Read more
February 11, 2016
Carol Mancusi-Ungaro has been awarded the 2016 Forbes Prize
IFA alumna Carol Mancusi-Ungaro has been awarded the biennial Forbes Prize for conspicuous services to Conservation by the Conservation by the International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works, its highest honour.
Carol Mancusi-Ungaro is currently the Melva Bucksbaum Associate Director for Conservation and Research at the Whitney Museum of American Art. She was the Spring 2013 Judith Praska Distinguished Visiting Professor In Conservation and Technical Studies at the Institute, and our honorary fellow in 2012. Read more
January 9, 2016
William L. Pressly wins the 2015 William M B Berger Prize for British Art History
IFA alumnus William L. Pressly's book, "James Barry’s Murals at the Royal Society of Arts: Envisioning a New Public Art," won the 2015 William M B Berger Prize for British art history, a prestigious international award for art books.
William L Pressly is emeritus professor of 18th and 19th century European art at the University of Maryland. He is the author of two previous books about James Barry.
The annual prize as was established in 2001, to reward “excellence in the field of British art history”, in memory of the late William M B Berger, an American philanthropist who died in 1999.
It is administered by The British Art Journal and awarded jointly with the Berger Collection Educational Trust of Denver, Colorado. Read more
November 11, 2015
New York Times: Drinking In the Beauty of Picasso’s Sculptures at MoMA
IFA alumna Lynda Zycherman, the Museum of Modern Art’s sculpture conservator, is profiled in the New York Times. An excerpt:
"At the moment, Lynda Zycherman is in her element. She’s supervising what might be called the care and feeding of the 120 objects in the Modern’s extraordinary “Picasso Sculpture,” an array that traces the artist’s breathtaking inventiveness in bronze, wood, clay, plaster, sheet metal and stones through six decades. Read more
October 28, 2015
New York Times: ‘Class Distinctions,’ a Boston Show, Highlights Social Divisions in 17th-Century Dutch Life
"American curators looking to borrow Dutch masterpieces from foreign museums, particularly those in the Netherlands, often get the brushoff. Pulling together an exhibition of Golden Age art requires, at the least, a compelling new perspective on works that have long been analyzed under microscopes — literally."
“You can’t just have a gimmick, ‘paintings with animals,’ and expect to get their star works,” said Ronni Baer, senior curator of European paintings at the museum. Punctilious lenders, she added, “need to know you’re doing something serious to advance scholarship and not just another masterpiece show.” Read more
October 18, 2015
CBS News: Celebrating the Hudson River School of Art
IFA alumnus Jason Rosenfeld, co-curator of "River Crossings," was interviewed on CBS Sunday Morning. "River Crossings" brings the work of 28 world-renowned contemporary artists back to the homes where distinctly American Art was born.
"In New York State's Hudson River Valley this season, something old ... and something new. It's an exhibit of contemporary art called 'River Crossings,' set in the homes of two giants of American Art: Thomas Cole, the founder of the Hudson River School; and Frederic Church, his student, and one of America's finest landscape painters. Church named the Moorish Victorian confection of a home he created Olana. "People come to Olana on a kind of pilgrimage," said co-curator Jason Rosenfeld, who teaches art history at Marymount Manhattan College. "They want to see where the art was created that was the first movement in America." Watch the interview
October 21, 2015
New York Times: Statue May Be a Lost Work by Donatello
IFA alumnus Andrew Butterfield may have made a stunning discovery.
“Scholarship in Renaissance sculpture is somewhere between 50 to 100 years behind that of painting, and so discoveries of this kind are still possible,” said Mr. Butterfield, a highly regarded scholar and old master treasure hunter who has been credited in recent years with discoveries of pieces by Bernini, Ghiberti, Mantegna and Donatello. If the new piece achieves a wide consensus in the art world, it would be a career coup. Mr. Butterfield stresses that the new piece is not currently for sale, but he hopes the piece will someday end up in a public collection. In a recent interview in his Westchester home, where he had the putto on display, he said, “Things still just bubble up, and mostly they are misunderstood.” Read more
September 1, 2015
Apollo Magazine: 40 Under 40
"The Apollo 40 Under 40 is a selection of the most talented and inspirational young people who are driving forward the art world today."
“Curators are in the public eye more than ever before, as institutional exhibition programmes grow and museums look for new ways to engage audiences with their collections. Our Thinkers category features several who are changing the way we think about art and artists.” Read more
July 13, 2015
The Brooklyn Rail: A Tribute to Linda Nochlin
IFA alumna Maura Reilly is the guest editor for the July issue of The Brooklyn Rail. She was also a contributing editor for the June issue of ARTnews: "Women in the Art World." An excerpt from the "Editor's Message" in the Brooklyn Rail:
"In 1988, Nochlin famously argued that “feminist art history is there to make trouble, to call into question, to ruffle feathers in the patriarchal dovecotes.” She has spent her entire professional career doing just that, making trouble, embodying the position of the maverick....She is a living legend. In what follows, colleagues, friends, students, and admirers pay tribute to Professor Nochlin.
March 27, 2015
artnet: 25 Women Curators Shaking Things Up
Three IFA alumnae makes this list of 25 curators to watch. Cathleen Chaffee, PhD 2013, is picture here.
"We all know that, as Beyoncé puts it, girls run the world. That's arguably especially true in the art world, where many powerful and influential art advisors, auction house specialists and dealers are all women. And then there are the curators, whose exhibitions help us to reassess established figures or bring new ones to light. Curators help build museum collections, or work independently to organize biennials and triennials, and often publish in magazines and journals as part of their portfolio.
We polled our colleagues far and wide to come up with this roundup of 25 up-and-coming curators to watch, arranged in alphabetical order. (No such list is ever complete, so we also welcome your nominations on our Facebook page.) Maybe you'll see them heading up a department at a museum near you?" Read more