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Annual Art Curators Conference Concludes in NY, Attracting Global Audience of Nearly 400

Tuesday, May 7, 2019   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Lucy Lydon
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2019 Conference placed special focus on art organizations’ responsibility

in fostering audience engagement


New York, NY, May 7, 2019 The Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) and the AAMC Foundation, the only international organization dedicated to advancing the curatorial profession, held its 18th Annual Conference & Meeting in New York City from May 4 through 7.  A vital part of the organization’s vision, the Conference gathers art curators from every discipline and type of organization, and provides a unique opportunity to connect across borders, fields, and affiliation. The 2019 Conference welcomed attendees from nine countries, and 38 states, featuring 35 speakers from 34 organizations, with featured Keynote Dialogues between Dr. Andrea Barnwell Brownlee, Director, Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, and Dr. Mary Schmidt Campbell, President, Spelman College; and Dr. William D. Adams, Senior Fellow, Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Former Chair of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Dr. Jane Chu, PBS Arts Adviser and Artist, Former Chair of the National Endowment for the Arts.

The Conference marked the official launch of a new AAMC Board President term as Marianne Lamonaca, Chief Curator / Associate Director of the Gallery, Bard Graduate Center: Decorative Arts, Design History, Material Culture, assumed her new role within the organization. AAMC also acknowledged the leadership of Christa Clarke, Independent Curator and Affiliate, Hutchins Center for African & African American Research, Harvard University, as she concludes her term as President, Board of Trustees (2017–2019), by announcing her Emerita status on the Board.  

“It is an honor to assume the role of Board President of the AAMC & AAMC Foundation at a time when issues of diversity, inclusion, and equity are fostering constructive changes within the curatorial profession, as all our programming demonstrates," said Lamonaca. "My aim is to continue the fine work already being done in the areas of advocacy, professional development, and networking, and to provide leadership for sustainable growth."  

Throughout the Conference, there was a focus on fostering open conversations versus a series of isolated lecture presentations, including roundtable discussions and specialized breakout sessions. Panel sessions explored a range of issues including: strategies for cultivating and securing support for new directions and narratives; lessons learned from the achievement of public libraries in audience engagement; reflections on current and new pipeline programs developed in partnerships; and the role of organizations to be a bridge and a catalyst for relational art practices that invite effective and meaningful collaboration.

 Over the four programming days, AAMC organized talks, tours and events at 25 organizations, including AIA New York | Center for Architecture; Brooklyn Historical Society; Brooklyn Museum; Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute; The Frick Collection; James Cohan Gallery; Just Off Madison; Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art; Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Workspace Studios; Museum at Eldridge Street; El Museo del Barrio; Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts; National Museum of the American Indian; New Museum; New-York Historical Society; Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation at The 8th Floor; Rubin Museum of Art; Sotheby’s; Sundaram Tagore Gallery; Swiss Institute; UrbanGlass; The Vilcek Foundation; Miriam & Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery, Columbia University; Wave Hill; and Weeksville Heritage Center.

 A full program catalog is available for download on here


Sotheby’s was the lead sponsor, supporting the overall program as well as the AAMC members’ reception at The Frick Collection.   

Additional support for the program was provided through gifts from the Art Fund and Samuel H. Kress Foundation for Travel Grant Fellowships, awarding 18 curators funding to attend the Conference.


Founded in 2001, the Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC) today has over 1,300 members from over 500+ institutions around the globe. Together the AAMC & AAMC Foundation celebrate the curatorial voice by supporting and promoting the work of art curators at all stages in their career through opportunities for networking, collaboration, professional development, and career advancement. In the ever-changing, non-profit visual art world, the AAMC Foundation is the voice for all curators—regardless of field, experience level, and institutional type. It ensures that the curatorial perspective on art, museums, and educational issues is actively communicated to the public, media, and museum profession.



Judith Pineiro, Executive Director, 212/879-5701,

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