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In-Conversation Series
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AAMC Foundation Regional Programming: 
In-Conversation Series


AAMC Foundation's regional programming series, In-Conversation, looks at important issues facing our museum and art organization community through a curatorial lens. By bringing this series forward, and opening the program to all, the Foundation continues to advance advocacy and inclusion within the curatorial profession. In hosting these programs in central regional areas, we are opening a dialogue within these communities and making connections across institutions.

The evening series is organized and supported by the AAMC Foundation. The open discussion format welcomes AAMC leadership, non-profit leaders, and voices from local communities to have an engaging dialogue on a focused subject. Following the discussion, AAMC welcomes the audience and speakers to continue the conversation at a brief reception. Past events have included: Addressing Implicit Bias in Museums, held in Washington, D.C.; Preventing Looting: What Curators & All Museum Staff Can Do held in NYC, and Museum Directors on the Curatorial Role, held in Boston. Future locations include Toronto, June 21, 2017. 


Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) & AAMC Foundation In-Conversation Series is generously supported in part by Christie's. 


In-Conversation: Chicago
Save the Date: September 12, 2017, Christie's



In-Conversation: Spark: Igniting Curiosity, the Curator’s Impact
June 21, 2017
Curators are intensely aware of the ways in which the research, collection and presentation of art creates value, sparks interest, and establishes meaningful aesthetic experiences. This responsibility is at the core of curatorial work, yet often under-emphasized. Recognizing the role that collection building, exhibition conception [or, ideation] and design, digital platform enhancement and virtual audience expansion has in how our communities interpret and appreciate art is a critical aspect of curatorial work. Equally important are current discussions of inclusion and access through art, as a key way of developing curatorial projects.

This program was generously hosted by the Art Gallery of Ontario. 

In-Conversation: Art & Social Justice

March 21, 2017

The Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) Foundation is hosting an important program entitled In-Conversation: Art & Social Justice. This timely and important roundtable discussion will focus on the arts and curatorial interventions as direct and active vehicles for social change. The event brings together five prominent arts leaders to have a conversation around the power of art - created and presented by artists, arts organizations, scholars, activists, and of course, curators - to instigate action, produce impactful outcomes, bring attention to critical issues, and open conversations by offering different points of view.

This is a subject that the AAMC Foundation and program moderator has been dedicated to even before the recent political upheavals. Now it is more urgent than ever to consider how curatorial practices can be a catalyst for addressing issues of social justice and civil liberties.

This program is sponsored in part by Christie’s, and hosted in part by LACMA.


In-Conversation: Addressing Implicit Bias in Museums
November 10, 2016

This discussion featured leading museum professionals, bringing diverse perspectives to bear on the topic of unintended bias and offer their insights about meaningful and impactful ways to address the issue. Unconscious beliefs and values with regard to race, gender and/or class often impede efforts to advance inclusiveness and equity in art museums. The implications of unintended biases are wide-ranging, from lack of diversity among museum trustees, staff and audiences to exclusionary practices of collecting, display and interpretation. Panelists discussed how cultural and social privilege is reflected in museums, discussed how to identify and change normative patterns of behavior that impact decision-making, and what we as curators can do to effect change in the museum world and beyond. This discussion featured: Christa Clarke, Senior Curator, Arts of Global Africa, Newark Museum, Moderator, President-Elect, AAMC & AAMC FoundationEduardo Díaz, Director, Smithsonian Latino Center; Elizabeth Easton, Co-Founder and Director, Center for Curatorial Leadership; E. Carmen Ramos, Curator of Latino art, Smithsonian American Art Museum; Kimberly J. Wilson, Deputy Director Human Resources, Volunteers, and Community Service, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. A video welcome address was delivered by Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole, Director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art.

This program was generously hosted by the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. 


In-Conversation: Museum Directors on the Curatorial Role 
September 26, 2016

Three museum directors, new to the Boston area, discussed the role of the art museum curator. Moderator John Ravenal (deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum) and panelists Martha Tedeschi (Harvard Art Museums) and Matthew Teitelbaum (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston) held a lively conversation on their views of the curatorial profession--the challenges and opportunities; balances in presenting western / non-western and  modern / non-modern; and how the role of curator has changed, what should change, and what lies ahead.

The event was held at the Harvard Art Museums.

In-Conversation: Preventing Looting: What Curators & All Museum Staff Can Do
June 29, 2016

The inaugural In Conversation program, presented by AAMC Foundation & the US committee of the International Council of Museums (ICOMUS), featured leading figures involved in the protection and preservation of cultural heritage sites and artifacts aimed at informing and engaging curators and those interested in their role on ways they can have an impact on this issue.

The discussants included Emily Rafferty, emerita president the Metropolitan Museum of Art who is active with U.N. cultural heritage efforts; Lisa Ackermann, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of World Monuments Fund, a leader in preservation efforts around the globe; Ian Wardropper, Director, The Frick Collection, museum director and curator whose expertise includes many areas related to cultural heritage; and Edward Bleiberg,
Curator, Egyptian, Classical, & Ancient Near Eastern Art; Managing Curator, Ancient Egyptian, African, & Asian Art whose areas of responsibility include many closely involved in present day conflict and looting; and Sandra L. Cobden, SVP, General Counsel, Dispute Resolution & Legal Public Affairs, an expert on legal issues relating to the preserving cultural heritage. Helen C. Evans, President AAMC and AAMC Foundation and Mary and Michael Jaharis Curator for Byzantine Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art will moderated discussion that addressed what curators can do regarding cultural preservation in areas of current conflict as well as globally.

The event was generously hosted by The Frick Collection. 


These programs are organized and presented by the Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) and AAMC Foundation. We are grateful to Christie's for their support of our In-Conversation programming.The information presented here is subject to change without notice. The organizers assume no responsibility for any errors that may appear here, and in no event shall the organizers be liable for incidental or consequential damages arising from use of this document or other program-related material. This document and parts thereof must not be reproduced or copied without the organizers providing written permission, and contents thereof must not be imparted to a third party nor be used for any unauthorized purpose.

Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) & AAMC Foundation In-Conversation Series is generously supported in part by 

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