Emma Payne joined the Center for Curatorial Leadership in 2019 where she oversees the full scope of the organization’s programming and communications. Prior to her current role, Payne received her MA in Modern and Contemporary Art and the Market from Christie’s Education where she received the Award for Academic Excellence. Payne’s Master’s thesis focused on the role of the American South and the dynamics of power in the photographs of Sally Mann.
Payne graduated from Washington and Lee University with a BA in Art History and a minor in Museum Studies. She spent a semester studying international relations and art history at IES in Paris and subsequently completed a thesis on Olafur Eliasson’s 2016 installation at the Château of Versailles. Throughout undergraduate and graduate school, Payne held internships at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery, the Staniar Gallery, and The FLAG Art Foundation. While at the Staniar Gallery, Payne assisted in curating Decade: Staniar Gallery’s 10th Anniversary Exhibition, Modern Art Goes Pop: Selections from W&L’s University Collection, and elin O’Hara slavick: Illuminated Artifacts.