Damon Reaves is Joining Washington’s National Gallery of Artwork as Head of Education and learning

THE Countrywide GALLERY OF Artwork (NGA) has appointed Damon Reaves head of education and learning. An expert educator in museum and classroom configurations, Reaves delivers much more than a dozen years of practical experience to the position.

He joins the National Gallery in Washington, D.C., from the Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA) where he has been on staff members since 2011, most lately serving as interim senior curator of education and public systems.

Reaves formally starts off at NGA on June 7. The news was introduced this early morning.

“We are thrilled for Damon to join the museum as he brings numerous strengths to our mission of welcoming and engaging our community group and the country,” Kate Haw, government officer for collections, exhibitions, and plans at the Countrywide Gallery of Artwork, reported in a assertion.

“In addition to his deep expertise as an educator, Damon’s collaborative spirit, his commitment to values-based mostly determination building, and his perseverance to contributing to an institution-extensive approach to variety, fairness, obtain, and inclusion will enhance the effects of our work not just in training, but throughout all that the Nationwide Gallery does.”

NGA has prioritized community services, which will make instruction programming critical and central to its mission. The museum supplies hundreds of no cost public packages for grownups, families, youngsters, university lecturers, interns, and scholars. Reaves will immediate a huge team of art training specialists charged with establishing, arranging, and presenting the museum’s programming, which ranges from in-person situations, virtual learning options, and artwork education publications. He will also oversee nearly 200 volunteer docents.

“In addition to his deep knowledge as an educator, Damon’s collaborative spirit, his motivation to values-primarily based selection building, and his perseverance to contributing to an institution-wide solution to diversity, equity, access, and inclusion will boost the effects of our perform not just in education, but across all that the Nationwide Gallery does.”
— NGA Executive Officer Kate Haw

At the Philadelphia Museum of Artwork, Reaves was initially a studio monitor, then rose to coordinator of neighborhood packages taking on growing obligation. He briefly served as director of neighborhood engagement at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston (2015), prior to rejoining the Philadelphia museum as affiliate curator of education and learning for local community engagement and entry. He was appointed interim senior curator of education and learning and community packages very last yr. Prior to PMA, he labored for four yrs with Mural Arts Philadelphia, the place he was a teaching artist (2007-11)

Reaves obtained his BFA from Miami College in Oxford, Ohio, and holds an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Both of those levels are in good and studio arts. A museum educator, group advocate, and studio artist, he lectures and publishes on a wide range of concerns, including shared authority in museum settings and engagement and social equity in cultural establishments.

He is joining the National Gallery of Artwork for the duration of a transformational instant at the museum in terms of Black representation in its leadership ranks. Kaywin Feldman turned director of NGA in 2018 and about the previous calendar year has appointed Steven Nelson as dean of the museum’s Middle for Highly developed Analyze in the Visible Arts (CASVA), employed Sheila McDaniel as administrator, and named Eric L. Motley deputy director. Motley’s appointment was announced before this month and he will sign up for the museum in August. Considering that its founding 80 yrs ago, zero African Americans had served as executive officers at NGA. Now there are 3 (among the a crew of 7).

In terms of NGA’s governance, Ford Foundation President Darren Walker was elected to the board of trustees in September 2019. On the curatorial front, Kanitra Fletcher joined the museum as the first-ever associate curator of African American and Afro-Diasporic art in February. Now Reaves is using on a important community going through appointment as head of education and learning, directing the museum’s strong public programming portfolio.

Whilst the handful of new Black appointments is nominal presented the museum employs about 1,000 persons, the roles are pivotal in phrases of institution-huge functions, investigate and scholarship, public programming, much better serving broader audiences, and a certain focus on artwork by Black artists.

Past week, CASVA announced a partnership with Howard College, establishing a multiyear, paid out undergraduate internship program with aid from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The Middle reported the system “aims to create pathways to professions in museums and arts-linked businesses for college students from historically Black faculties and universities (HBCUs) and other institutions that provide populations that are underrepresented in the museum discipline.” In addition, CASVA has been co-sponsoring Howard’s once-a-year James A. Porter Colloquium on African American Artwork because 2019.

Reaves explained he is wanting forward to joining the Countrywide Gallery of Art all through this promising period. “It’s an honor to be signing up for the Countrywide Gallery of Artwork, specifically at this pivotal minute when museums across the country are recommitting them selves to staying civic establishments,” Reaves explained in a statement.

“Throughout my vocation as an arts educator, amplifying group voices has been at the heart of my observe. Deepening our collaboration with lecturers, learners, and persons of all backgrounds improves the museum’s targets to encourage a countrywide audience and generate innovative ordeals for all. I’m excited to be component of this conversation at the Nationwide Gallery.” CT


Graphic: Damon Reaves. | Picture by Elizabeth Leitzell, Courtesy Nationwide Gallery of Art


Come across More National Gallery of Artwork Director Kaywin Feldman spoke to Jonathan Capehart of The Washington Put up about the controversial determination to hold off “Philip Guston Now,” the touring exhibition showcasing the artist’s comedian-style photographs of Klan figures


“Philip Guston Now” documents the traveling exhibition co-structured by the Nationwide Gallery of Artwork and a few other museums—Tate Modern-day, Museum of Good Arts, Boston, and The Museum of Great Arts, Houston. Artists Glenn Ligon and Trenton Doyle Hancock are amid individuals who contributed essays to the exhibition catalog. “Gordon Parks: The New Tide: Early Operate 1940–1950” was released to accompany a modern exhibition structured by the Countrywide Gallery of Artwork that explored the formative ten years of Gordon Parks’s follow, the many years that formed the eyesight of the legendary photographer’s vocation.


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