CCL Announces Class of 2012

2012 Fellowship_Class Portrait
CCL Class of 2012. Clockwise from top left: Andrea Bayer, John Ravenal, Michelle Joan Wilkinson, Paola Antonelli, Christa Clarke, Martha Tedeschi, Stanton Thomas, Elizabeth Smith, Leah Dickerman, Thomas Denenberg, Elizabeth Finch Photo by Amy Elliott

The Center for Curatorial Leadership (CCL) is pleased to announce its 2012 class of fellows. The incoming fellows represent a cross section of the most respected curators across North America. 

Co-founded by Elizabeth Easton and Agnes Gund, the CCL is dedicated to expanding the leadership capacity of curators to meet the challenges of the 21st century museum. First established in 2008, the program boasts 41 graduates to date from a diverse roster of 
institutions. The impact of the fellowship can be measured not only by the success of the graduates themselves (over 60% have advanced to positions with greater leadership responsibility, including five who are now museum directors), but also in the steadfast commitment of the many museum directors, foundations, civic leaders, and business school faculty who contribute to the program. "At first, we weren’t sure if the museum community would embrace the CCL," says Gund, "We’re now coming into our fifth year and the CCL continues to be a truly vital force in that sector. I think everyone has a real 'all hands on deck' approach to maintaining the quality and excellence of the program. Many of the best museum directors in the U.S. and abroad served as mentors in the program’s first year and continue to work with us—their tireless contribution is so wonderful for the CCL and, especially, our fellows. The enduring support of the cultural community really emphasizes how critically important this program is right now for the entire profession."

The program, which spans four weeks over the first six months of the year, includes instruction by Columbia Business School faculty, a six-month mentorship, a weeklong museum residency, and participation in a long-term team-based project. "The team project is a way for fellows to work together on a project that addresses issues of concern for the field at-large," says Easton. Past projects have covered a wide range of topics including: art museum outreach via new technologies, the role of contemporary art, an examination of the discipline of art history and the influence of the academy on career choice, new strategies for diversity within the profession, and a self-examination of the CCL itself. "Our hope is that 2012 will involve taking a critical look at the role of mentoring at all levels of one's career.”

2012 Fellows

  • Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator, Department of Architecture and Design, The Museum of Modern Art
  • Andrea Bayer, Curator, Department of European Paintings, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
  • Christa Clarke, Senior Curator, Arts of Africa and the Americas, and Curator, Arts of Africa, The Newark Museum
  • Thomas Denenberg, Former Deputy Director and Chief Curator, Portland Museum of Art; Incoming Director, Shelburne Museum
  • Leah Dickerman, Curator, Department of Painting and Sculpture, The Museum of Modern Art 
  • Elizabeth Finch, Lunder Curator of American Art, Colby College Museum of Art 
  • John Ravenal, Sydney and Frances Lewis Family Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts 
  • Elizabeth Smith, Executive Director, Curatorial Affairs, Art Gallery of Ontario 
  • Martha Tedeschi, Curator, Department of Prints and Drawings, Art Institute of Chicago
  • Stanton Thomas, Curator of European Paintings and Decorative Arts, Memphis Brooks Museum of Art 
  • Michelle Joan Wilkinson, Director of Collections and Exhibitions, Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture

Hannah Howe
Center for Curatorial Leadership
174 East 80th Street
New York, NY 10075


Press Release - CCL Announces 2012 Fellows (download)