Nancy Spector Appointed Deputy Director and Chief Curator of the Brooklyn Museum

Saturday, December 19, 2015
Nancy Spector Appointed Deputy Director and Chief Curator of the Brooklyn Museum

The Brooklyn Museum is pleased to announce the appointment of Nancy Spector as Deputy Director and Chief Curator. Spector joins the Museum after having served for more than 29 years at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. She comes to the Brooklyn Museum as the first senior staff member hired by Anne Pasternak following her recent appointment as the Museum’s Shelby White and Leon Levy Director.

Nancy Spector Appointed Deputy Director and Chief Curator of the Brooklyn Museum

The Brooklyn Museum is pleased to announce the appointment of Nancy Spector as Deputy Director and Chief Curator. Spector joins the Museum after having served for more than 29 years at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York. She comes to the Brooklyn Museum as the first senior staff member hired by Anne Pasternak following her recent appointment as the Museum’s Shelby White and Leon Levy Director. She will succeed Kevin Stayton, who after 35 years will serve as Deputy Director and Director of Collections and History. Spector will assume her new role in April 2016. 

“The Brooklyn Museum’s past is rooted in vision, courage, and a good measure of chutzpah. With Nancy Spector as our Chief Curator, we can count on a trailblazing future that charts new territory for our Museum. We can expect Nancy to explore the important questions of the role of art and museums for the twenty-first century, shaking up old canons and proposing new ones, while sharing our love of art and artists with ever-expanding audiences,” said Pasternak.

Elizabeth A. Sackler, Brooklyn Museum Board Chair and Founder of the Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, said, “I am thrilled to welcome Nancy Spector to the Brooklyn Museum. Nancy’s expertise and vision will revive our world-class collections and inspire rich and lively temporary exhibitions to excite the communities we serve. Her exceptional intelligence will support our extensive educational and public programming.” 

About Nancy Spector

A preeminent authority on contemporary visual culture, Nancy Spector has served as Deputy Director and Jennifer and David Stockman Chief Curator of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, where she has demonstrated a profound commitment to the art of our time and promoted an ethos of radical innovation in the context of exhibitions and public programs. Her numerous award-winning exhibitions include Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Matthew Barney’s Cremaster cycle, Richard Prince: Spiritual America, Louise Bourgeois, Marina Abramovi: Seven Easy Pieces, Tino Sehgal, and Maurizio Cattelan: All. She also organized the group exhibitions Moving Pictures; Singular Forms (Sometimes Repeated); and theanyspacewhatever. Her exhibition on the work of Peter Fischli and David Weiss (co-organized with Nat Trotman) will open at the Guggenheim on February 5, 2016.

During her tenure at the Guggenheim, Spector has been heralded for her outstanding accomplishments including developing an ambitious collections strategy for the museum and spearheading the creation of four acquisition committees. Spector has shaped the Guggenheim’s exhibition calendars in New York as well as its affiliate museums including Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, the Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, and the former Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin.

Her distinguished career includes conceiving the biennial Hugo Boss Prize for excellence in contemporary art in 1996 and serving as Adjunct Curator of the 1997 Venice Biennale. She was a co-organizer of the first Berlin Biennial in 1998 (along with Klaus Biesenbach and Hans Ulrich Obrist) and in 2007 was the U.S. Commissioner for the Venice Biennale, where she presented the exhibition Felix Gonzalez-Torres: America. Under the auspices of the Deutsche Guggenheim, she initiated special commissions by Andreas Slominski, Hiroshi Sugimoto, and Lawrence Weiner as well as an exhibition devoted to the work of Joseph Beuys and Matthew Barney. Spector is a recipient of the Peter Norton Family Foundation Curators Award, five International Art Critics Awards for exhibitions, and a Disruptive Innovation Award from Tribeca Film Festival for YouTube Play: A Biennial of Creative Video. In 2014, she was included in the 40 Women to Watch Over 40 list.

Spector is the author of numerous scholarly books, catalogue essays, and editorials. She received a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College, an M.A. in art history from the Clark Art Institute at Williams College, and an M.Phil. in art history from City University of New York. She is a long-time
Brooklyn resident. 

Image above: Nancy Spector. Photo by Elena Olivo 

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Yves Klein, IKB Godet, 1958, dry pigment, synthetic resin on gauze on panel. Private collection. ©Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris.

Yves Klein, IKB Godet, 1958, dry pigment, synthetic resin on gauze on panel. Private collection. ©Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York/ADAGP, Paris.

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