Durham's esteemed Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University has appointed a museum director.
Schroth, the Nancy Hanks Senior Curator at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke
University, has been named the museum’s new director, Duke President Richard H.
Brodhead announced Thursday.
Schroth has been serving as
its interim director since November. She succeeds Kimerly Rorschach as the Mary
D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director of the museum. Rorschach left Duke to
become president of the Seattle Art Museum.
“Sarah is one of the most
respected and admired curators in the country. With her appointment as
director, we can be certain of the Nasher’s continued rise as an arts force on
campus, in the region, and nationally,” Brodhead said. “Her talent and
imagination fueled the museum's initial success, and her plans for further
integrating the Nasher with other creative activity across the campus, and in
the community, will create a new level of excellence for the arts at Duke.”
An expert on Spanish art of
the 17th century, Schroth, 62, joined the Duke University Museum of
Art -- as it was then known -- in 1995. In her new role, she will serve as the
Nasher’s chief executive, with responsibility for its artistic excellence and
intellectual direction. She reports to Provost Peter Lange, the university’s
senior academic officer.
“I am thrilled with the
selection of Sarah as director of the Nasher,” Lange said. “She has been a
superb curator, bringing wonderful shows and working closely with Trevor
Schoonmaker and the visiting and faculty curators to give the Nasher its
outstanding and distinctive artistic profile during its founding years.
“In addition, she has
worked with me three times as interim director, on each occasion providing
excellent leadership while doing two jobs. Now that she will be the director, I
am anticipating continued outstanding and innovative programming in this next
phase of the Nasher's development into one of the pre-eminent university
museums in the country and the world.”
While at Duke, Schroth has
organized numerous shows ranging from old masters to contemporary art,
including the award-winning 2008 exhibition, “El Greco to Velázquez: Art during
the Reign of Philip III.” As a result of that exhibition, which she organized
with the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Schroth was named knight-commander in
the Order of Isabel la Católica by King Juan Carlos I of Spain. She also has
collaborated on major exhibitions with the Museo del Prado, the Seattle Art
Museum and others, and has published widely.
Schroth has worked closely
with Duke faculty in shaping their scholarship into exhibitions, such as by
working as co-curator with Kristine Stiles on “Rauschenberg’s Legacy” and with
Patricia Leighten on “Light Sensitive: Photographic Work from North Carolina
Collections.” She also has been a coordinating curator with faculty guest
curators, such as Mark Antliff on “The Vorticists.” Her teaching interests are
patronage studies in the field of Spanish art, and museum studies with an
emphasis on exhibition planning, connoisseurship and conservation.
Before coming to Duke,
Schroth worked at the Kimbell Museum in Fort Worth, Texas; the National Gallery
of Art in Washington, D.C.; and the Ackland Art Museum at the University of
North Carolina, Chapel Hill. She majored in art history at Mary Washington
College and, after working at the Atlanta College of Art and living in Spain,
earned her Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. She went
on to receive the David E. Finley Fellowship at the National Gallery of Art’s
Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts.
“I’m delighted to have this
opportunity to lead the Nasher in what promises to be a very exciting time in
its history, as we approach its 10th anniversary celebration in 2015, undertake
new initiatives in undergraduate education and expand the scope of our
exhibitions,” Schroth said. “It’s been my privilege to have served under a
great director in Kim Rorschach, whose model I am honored to follow; to have
worked closely with Raymond Nasher, the museum’s founding patron, whose legacy
of connoisseurship and patronage I hold dear; to have supervised a relentlessly
hard-working and uncomplaining staff as interim director; and to have enjoyed
the support and guidance of Dick Brodhead and Peter Lange throughout my time at
Duke. Having been present at the creation of the Nasher, I welcome the
opportunity to continue and expand on the work of so many.”
Richard Powell, John
Spencer Bassett Professor of Art, Art History & Visual Studies and a member
of the Nasher’s board of advisors and faculty advisory committee, chaired an
11-person committee that conducted an international search for the position.
The Nasher Museum opened in
2005 as a major center for the arts on Duke’s campus and in the surrounding
Research Triangle area. It promotes engagement with the visual arts among a
broad community, including Duke students, faculty and staff, the greater Durham
community, the Triangle region, and the national and international art
community. The museum presents an ambitious schedule of exhibitions, many of
which travel to major institutions around the world, and has a growing
collection of international contemporary art. Each year, more than 100,000 people
visit the 65,000-square-foot museum, which was designed by architect Rafael
Viñoly. Additional information is
available on the museum’s website.
Learn more about art in Durham online.