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The demands of curatorial and higher leadership positions at art museums are more complex than ever. In 2015, the Center for Curatorial Leadership (CCL) offered three programs designed to prepare the curators of today and tomorrow to meet these challenges and strengthen our art institutions for the future. •

Leadership Training for Senior Curators

CCL/Mellon Foundation Seminar in Curatorial Practice

MoMA International Curatorial Institute

“This was a very dynamic year for CCL — one in which transformative things occurred. A couple of outstanding moments: When students from our Ph.D. program and CCL Fellows interacted with unexpected energy at a February ELIZABETH EASTON Director and Co-Founder, CCL

event, resulting in real jobs, and when Ghetto Film School students from the South Bronx filmed at The Frick Collection under the auspices of CCL’s diversity mentoring project. I hope to keep inside me forever the memory of the focus, maturity, and confidence those students had while filming the movie they masterminded from start to finish. Seeing them work was one of the great experiences in my professional life.”





CL’s renowned core leadership training program provides senior curators with the tools they need to effect change at the institutional level—including expertise in developing strategic plans, cross-

departmental collaborations, technology initiatives, and fundraising campaigns. For the 2015 class, CCL selected 12 curators from a competitive pool of some 50 applicants representing a wide range of specialty fields, from Byzantine to Native American art. The inclusion of two Fellows with directorial responsibilities enriched and expanded dialogue throughout the program (see Appendix for a list of Fellows). Through a synthesis of theory and practice, the program’s five-month curriculum addresses the major functional areas museum leaders oversee. Beginning with a two-week intensive in New York, curators take part in courses led by Columbia Business School, practicums, residencies, and more. Highlights from CCL 2015: •

o r g a n i z at i o n a l i m pac t to o l , a new peer-learning project that asks curators to articulate a current professional challenge, write a case study to share with teammates, and devise short- and long-term strategies for implementing changes.

panel and discussion with philanthropic leaders on highimpact funding, hosted by the Blackstone Charitable Foundation and including representatives from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Ford Foundation, and Terra Foundation for American Art.



google creative lab discussion with the Lab’s Executive Creative Director on how to incubate ideas and drive innovative change.

individual week-long residency with a museum director outside Fellows’ home institutions.

• Colin Bailey (CCL 2008) appointed Director, The Morgan Library CCL alumni are continually & Museum promoted to higher leadership • Richard Rand (CCL 2008) named Associate Director for Collections, positions. In 2015, the J. Paul Getty Museum following graduates advanced • Gloria Groom (CCL 2009) named Chair of the European Painting to new roles: and Sculpture Department, Art Institute of Chicago

Michael Taylor (CCL 2011) appointed Chief Curator and Deputy Director for Art and Education, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

Leah Dickerman (CCL 2012) named the first Marlene Hess Curator of Painting and Sculpture, MoMA

Emily Neff (CCL 2013) appointed Executive Director, Memphis Brooks Museum

C.D. Dickerson (CCL 2014) named Curator and Head of the Sculpture Department, National Gallery of Art

Catherine Futter (CCL 2014) promoted to The Louis L. and Adelaide C. Ward Senior Curator of European Arts, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, and subsequently promoted to Director of Curatorial Affairs, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art





CL is dedicated to offering a curriculum that responds to the most important issues facing the field. Addressing the lack of diversity in museum curatorial and leadership positions is a key

priority for CCL. Among other projects, CCL Fellows mentor students from communities underrepresented in the curatorial field. In one 2015 mentorship, Xavier Salomon, Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator of The Frick Collection, partnered with the Ghetto Film School (GFS), a South Bronx–based film program for high school students. For five months, Salomon taught weekly three-hour art history classes to GFS students when the museum was closed to the public. The lessons aided the students’ understanding of narrative in visual art and filmmaking. The students then wrote, directed, filmed, and edited the first movie ever made at the Frick Collection, inspired by Fragonard’s Progress of Love. In a January 2016 The New York Times article profiling the GFS/Frick collaboration, CCL Director, Elizabeth Easton reflected: “There’s a lot of privilege in the museum world. We have to change the game.” Easton was named to a task force organized by the Ford Foundation and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art that is focused on cultural diversity in American museums, further promoting CCL as an active voice in the broader field.





uilding on its core leadership training program, CCL launched a two-week intensive program for art history doctoral students in 2014. Funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the CCL/

Mellon Foundation Seminar in Curatorial Practice provides students with much-needed opportunities to engage directly with museums and objectbased research, as well as take introductory courses in relevant business principles. Armed with this knowledge, students are better prepared to analyze their career options. After receiving nearly 200 applications in 2014, CCL decided to narrow eligibility to students in the final stages of their dissertation research. In 2015, the program once again received a highly competitive pool of applicants—approximately 80 students—and selected 15 for the cohort (see Appendix for list of participants), seven of whom came from underrepresented backgrounds. By connecting these talented students to leading museum professionals, CCL seeks to encourage their involvement in the sector—ultimately expanding the diversity of leadership in museums. With New York’s renowned museums as classrooms, the 2015 program immersed the students in art institutions of different scales and missions.



Highlights from the 2015 CCL/Mellon Seminar: •

t r a i n i n g w i t h c o lu m b i a b u s i n e s s s c h o o l , which took Seminar participants out of their academic and curatorial comfort zones for lessons in negotiation and building social capital.


m e n to r s h i p s



c u r ato r s,

providing unique opportunities for students to expand their understanding of the curatorial field and clarify their career goals. •

i n c r e a s e d f o c u s o n n o n - w e s t e r n a r t, including a behindthe-scenes tour of the Met’s exhibition “China: Through the Looking Glass” and a discussion about collecting and stewardship with Maxwell K. Hearn, Douglas Dillon Chairman of the Department of Asian Art and member of CCL leadership class of 2009.

t e a m - b a s e d p r ac t i c u m that challenged students to assess the mission alignment of four New York City institutions: the Museum of Arts and Design, The Morgan Library & Museum, the Hispanic Society of America, and the New Museum of Contemporary Art. Philippe de Montebello, Director Emeritus of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, moderated the students’ final presentations.



The seeds of the first pilot years of the Seminar have produced exciting results, including:

Akili Tommasino (Harvard University, CCL/Mellon 2014), who was mentored by two curators of Painting and Sculpture at MoMA, Leah Dickerman, a CCL graduate and The Marlene Hess Curator, and Anne Umland, The Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Curator, was selected as Curatorial Assistant in their department in 2014.

Natalie Musteata (The Graduate Center, CUNY, CCL/Mellon 2014) was nominated for the Bonaldi Art Prize for curatorial innovation in 2015.

In 2014, Julia McHugh (UCLA, CCL/Mellon 2014), who was mentored by Ronda Kasl, Curator of Colonial Latin American Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, secured a Douglass Foundation Fellowship in American Art at the museum.

Claire Brandon (Institute of Fine Arts, NYU, CCL/Mellon 2014) was selected to serve as research assistant for the William Copley exhibition organized by the Menil Collection and the Fondazione Prada.

Kimberli Gant (University of Texas, Austin, CCL/Mellon 2014) was named a Mellon Predoctoral Fellow at the Newark Museum of Art, working on a collection reinstallation with Christa Clarke, a CCL leadership graduate and Senior Curator, Arts of Global Africa.



“I am so excited to see CCL grow and have its various programs energize each other. Young people who participate in the new Ph.D. program are being mentored by senior curators, the alumni of our core program. The students are getting AGNES GUND Co-Founder and Chair, CCL

inspiration, they are getting ideas, and they are getting jobs! Best of all, these young professionals are invigorating the field with their energy, their inventiveness, and their vision for the future of museums.�




n 2014, MoMA invited CCL to design a two-week intensive program for global curators based on CCL’s successful leadership training model. The aim of the International Curatorial Institute is to develop

participants’ capacity to tackle strategic issues facing 21st-century arts organizations around the world. This past September, ten international curators and two representatives from MoMA convened in New York City for the second iteration of the program. Hailing from a variety of art spaces in China, Greece, India, Israel, Korea, Nigeria, Palestine, Poland, Russia, and Senegal, the visiting curators represented a vast set of perspectives and are all pioneering figures in the global art community (see Appendix for a list of the curators.) Bringing together these top thinkers prompted vibrant exchanges about the challenges present in their local contexts, as well as the seismic transformations taking place in the world’s contemporary art landscape. Each morning, Columbia Business School instructors taught classes on topics such as strategic thinking, team building, and negotiation. Lunch and afternoon sessions provided in-depth exposure to the inner workings of MoMA and to the activities of prominent leaders, philanthropists, and collectors from New York City. Collaborating with MoMA on the Institute presents a significant opportunity for CCL to customize its primary training model to align with the needs of global constituents.



The Year Ahead


n 2016—CCL’s ninth year of curatorial training—the organization will continue to strengthen each of its programs, as well as find meaningful ways to mark its upcoming tenth

anniversary. In anticipation of this significant event, CCL has held preliminary conversations with alumni to assess what new programs or resources should be developed to mark a decade of curatorial training and propel the next ten years. One distinguishing factor alumni have highlighted is that CCL is the only organization to bring together students, curators, and museum directors in a collegial, learning environment. In 2016, CCL plans to capitalize on the unique demographics of its alumni base by organizing gatherings that foster cross-generational connections and further strengthen CCL’s distinguished network. For the core program in particular, CCL will call upon its alumni base of nearly 150 professionals to research what their future needs might look like. By providing additional learning opportunities, CCL can enhance its capacity to be a center for innovative ideas for the field.








DORTHE A AGESEN Curator/Senior Researcher Statens Museum for Kunst Copenhagen

K ATHLEEN ASH-MILBY Associate Curator Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian New York City

GUDRUN BUEHL Curator/Museum Director Dumbarton Oaks Washington, D.C.

RENÉ PAUL BARILLEAUX Chief Curator/ Curator of Art After 1945 McNay Art Museum San Antonio

CAROL ELIEL Curator of Modern Art Los Angeles County Museum of Art Los Angeles

ANNE GOODYEAR Co-Director Bowdoin College Museum of Art Brunswick, Maine

TOBY K AMPS Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art Menil Collection Houston

COREY KELLER Curator of Photography San Francisco Museum of Modern Art San Francisco

MARY MORTON Curator/Head of the Department of French Paintings National Gallery of Art Washington, D.C.

PIETER ROELOFS Curator of the 17th-Century Dutch Painting Rijksmuseum Amsterdam

X AVIER SALOMON Peter Jay Sharp Chief Curator The Frick Collection New York City

SARAH SCHLEUNING Curator of Decorative Arts and Design High Museum of Art Atlanta




ANDREA ACHI Late Antique and Byzantine Art Institute of Fine Arts, NYU

JAMINE AN Contemporary Art History University of California

DANIELLA BERMAN Art of 18th- and 19th-Century France Institute of Fine Arts, NYU

EMILIE BOONE Photography / Art of the African Diaspora Northwestern University

RACHEL BOYD Italian Renaissance Art Columbia University

Y VE CHAVEZ Colonial Latin American Art / Native American Art University of California

SARA E. COLE Graeco-Roman Egypt Yale University

RACHEL KREITER Egyptian Art Emory University

CRAIG LEE History of Modern Architecture and Design University of Delaware

SYDNEY SIMON Post-World War II American Art and Design Stanford University

STEPHANIE TUNG Modern and Contemporary Chinese Art Princeton University

PHIL TAYLOR 20th-Century Art and the History of Photography Princeton University

EMILY WARNER American and Modern Art University of Pennsylvania

ELIZABETH WILLIAMS Byzantine and Early Islamic Art History Institute of Fine Arts, NYU

ORIN ZAHRA Europe 1850-1950, specializing in Global Impressionism Washington University in St. Louis




ROOBINA K ARODE Director and Chief Curator Kiran Nadar Museum New Delhi

KOYO KOUOH Artistic Director Raw Material Company Dakar

RITA KERSTING Landau Family Curator of Contemporary Art The Israel Museum Jerusalem

INHYE KIM Curator National Museum of Contemporary Art, Korea Seoul

K ATERINA KOSKINA Director National Museum of Contemporary Art Athens, Greece

SNEJANA KRASTEVA Curator Garage Museum of Contemporary Art Moscow

DANIEL MUZYCZUK Curator Muzeum Sztuki Łódź, Poland

AZU NWAGBOGU Director African Artists’ Foundation Lagos

JACK PERSEKIAN Director The Palestinian Museum Ramallah

YASMIL RAYMOND Associate Curator of Painting and Sculpture MoMA New York City

SARAH SUZUKI Associate Curator of Drawings and Prints MoMA New York City

WANG CHUNCHEN Head of the Department of Curatorial Research CAFA Art Museum of China Central Academy of Fine Arts Beijing




CCL would like to thank the following foundations, trusts, and individuals who have made our programs possible in 2015 The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Theodore R. and Barbara B. Aronson

Ford Foundation

Charles L. Sawyers, M.D., and Susan S. Sawyers

Agnes Gund The Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation Bloomberg Philanthropies Leon Levy Foundation The Neubauer Family Foundation Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation Alice & Thomas Tisch Foundation Marlene and Spencer Hays Foundation Vital Projects Fund and Charina Endowment Fund

Virginia M. Schirrmeister Lead Annuity Trust Elizabeth W. Easton Edward P. Henry Michael Margitich Marnie Pillsbury Anne Goldrach Hester Diamond Lee L. Traub D. Ronald Daniel and Lise Scott Colta Ives

Blackstone Charitable Foundation

Kimerly Rorschach



We would also like to thank the graduates who have contributed in 2015 to support future classes of Alumni Fund CCL Fellows René Paul Barilleaux

Catherine Futter

Graham Boettcher

Toby Kamps

Jason Busch

Alisa LaGamma

Sarah Cash

Alison de Lima Greene

Christa Clarke

Emily Neff

Deborah Cullen

Jeannine O’Grody

Malcolm Daniel

Jordana Pomeroy

Thomas Denenberg

Jon Seydl

Leah Dickerman

Martha Tedeschi

Judith Dolkart

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Center for Curatorial Leadership Annual Report 2015  

Center for Curatorial Leadership Annual Report 2015