Susan L. Talbott, Director and CEO, Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art
, recently announced the appointment of Ulrich Birkmaier as Chief Conservator. Birkmaier, who joined the museum in 2000 as Paintings Conservator, served as the Acting Chief Conservator since October 2011. He will work closely with the Director and the Curatorial Department to oversee the conservation needs of the Wadsworth Atheneum.
Ulrich has done a tremendous job managing the Conservation Department of the Wadsworth Atheneum. The museums commitment to the excellent care, preservation, treatment, and technical analysis of its vast collection is at the very core of its mission, said Robin Jaffee Frank, Chief Curator and Krieble Curator of American Paintings and Sculpture, We look forward to his continued leadership of the Conservation Department.
Birkmaier received his diploma in conservation from the Istituto Per LArte E Il Restauro in Florence, Italy in 1988, and completed his studies at the Doerner Institut, Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen, Munich, Germany. He has worked as a graduate intern and assistant conservator at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, CA; as a Culpeper Fellow at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; and as an Associate Conservator for the Fine Arts Museum, San Francisco, CA.
Most recently, Birkmaier was guest scholar at the Getty Conservation Institute in Los Angeles, where he conducted research on painting supports utilized by Marsden Hartley. With a focus on technical art history, Birkmaier has lectured widely throughout the United States. In addition to his publications about technical research of old master paintings, he was a catalogue essayist on artist materials and techniques for the monographic exhibitions Marsden Hartley (2003), Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, and Oscar Bluemner: A Passion For Color (2006), Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.