CCL Announces Students for 2015 CCL/Mellon Foundation Seminar

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Center for Curatorial Leadership Trains New Generation of Curatorial Leaders

Fifteen Art History Doctoral Students Selected for 2015 CCL/Mellon Foundation Seminar in Curatorial Practice

The Center for Curatorial Leadership (CCL) has announced the participants of the second CCL/Mellon Foundation Seminar in Curatorial Practice, recognizing fifteen art history doctoral students with a track record of creative scholarship and the potential to make significant contributions to the future of museums. For close to nine years, CCL has helped cultivate curatorial leaders by providing essential tools for guiding museums today and into the future. The seminar for Ph.D. students is a critical extension of this core mission. Generously supported by a two and a half year grant from theAndrew W. Mellon Foundation, the seminar launched in 2014 to introduce young scholars, at the outset of their careers, to the strategic challenges facing museum professionals.

Selected by a committee of senior curators from a pool of almost 100 applicants, the participants represent eleven American universities. For this second year of the program, CCL changed the cohort to students who have completed their comprehensive exams and begun their dissertations. By focusing on advanced students, CCL aims to create a network of scholars who will emerge into the profession together.

The students possess interests in a breadth of global regions. Their art historical specialties include Byzantine art, modern architecture and design, Egyptian art, Impressionism, colonial Latin American art, and Chinese photography. Each student demonstrates a resolute focus on building an object-based curatorial acumen. These promising scholars integrate historical scholarship and museum practice in diverse and innovative ways.

This year’s seminar begins on June 8 in New York City. For two weeks, students will be immersed in institutions of all sizes and specialties and in conversations with experts from every discipline of the field. They will learn how collaborations develop among curators, conservators, and educators, among other professionals. Through classes led by professors from Columbia Business School, students will study strategies of negotiation and decision making, as well as the fundamentals of organizational models. A team practicum will challenge them to analyze how museums calibrate mission with collection, exhibition, and programming. The students’ experience will be enriched by individual mentorships with distinguished curators in their specialty area who are working in museums across the New York region.

The students, listed alphabetically, are:

  • Andrea Achi, Institute of Fine Arts, NYU
    Area of Specialty: Late Antique and Byzantine Art
  • Jamin An, University of California, Los Angeles
    Area of Specialty: Contemporary Art History
  • Daniella Berman, Institute of Fine Arts, NYU
    Area of Specialty: Art of 18th- and 19th-century France
  • Emilie Boone, Northwestern University
    Area of Specialty: Photography, Art of the African Diaspora
  • Rachel Boyd, Columbia University
    Area of Specialty: Italian Renaissance
  • Yve Chavez, University of California, Los Angeles
    Area of Specialty: Colonial Latin American Art, Native American Art
  • Sara E. Cole, Yale University
    Area of Specialty: Ancient Mediterranean and Near Eastern Art
  • Rachel Kreiter, Emory University
    Area of Specialty: Egyptian Art
  • Craig Lee, University of Delaware
    Area of Specialty: History of Modern Architecture and Design
  • Sydney Skelton Simon, Stanford University
    Area of Specialty: Post-World War II American Art and Design
  • Phil Taylor, Princeton University
    Area of Specialty: 20th-century Art and the History of Photography
  • Stephanie Tung, Princeton University
    Area of Specialty: Modern and Contemporary Chinese Art
  • Emily Warner, University of Pennsylvania
    Area of Specialty: American and Modern Art
  • Elizabeth Williams, Institute of Fine Arts, NYU
    Area of Specialty: Byzantine and Early Islamic Art History
  • Orin Zahra, Washington University in Saint Louis
    Area of Specialty: Europe 1850-1950, with a specialization in global Impressionism

For more information about the students, click here.


Hannah Howe
Center for Curatorial Leadership


2015 Seminar Press Announcement 6.4.15 (PDF) (download)