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Lynn Zelevansky Named The Henry J. Heinz II Director of Carnegie Museum of Art
Lynn Zelevansky.

PITTSBURGH, PA.— Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh today announced that Lynn Zelevansky has been named the Henry J. Heinz II director of Carnegie Museum of Art. Zelevansky is currently the Terri and Michael Smooke curator and department head of contemporary art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA). A writer, art professor, and curator, for the past 14 years Zelevansky has focused her considerable energies on her work as a curator of modern and contemporary art at LACMA, where she has organized numerous exhibitions, including the award-winning Beyond Geometry: Experiments in Form, 1940s to 1970s. Prior to her work at LACMA, she spent seven years in the department of painting and sculpture at New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), where, among many other exhibitions, she worked with curator William Rubin on the much-lauded Picasso and Braque: Pioneering Cubism.

“We are absolutely delighted to be welcoming Lynn Zelevansky as the new Henry J. Heinz II director of Carnegie Museum of Art,” said David M. Hillenbrand, president of Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh. “Her work as a writer, educator, and incredibly thoughtful art curator has been leading her to such a position for quite some time, and we’re thrilled that our search coincided with Lynn’s readiness to take on the director’s role at a respected institution such as Carnegie Museums.” Zelevansky assumes her new role on July 15.

A born and bred New Yorker, Zelevansky began her undergraduate studies in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, at Carnegie Mellon University, before returning to New York to earn a BFA at Pratt Institute and an MA in photography at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts. She started her career as a university arts professor, teaching classes at The New School for Social Research in New York City, The Cooper Union in New York City, and Pratt Institute in Brooklyn.

While an art curator at MoMA and LACMA, Zelevansky earned numerous awards for her curatorial work, including the 2005 First Place Award for “Best Thematic Museum Show Nationally” from the U.S. Branch of the International Association of Art Critics (AICA) for Beyond Geometry; and a 1994/95 award for “Best Museum Exhibition of Emerging Art from the AICA’s North American Branch for Sense and Sensibility: Women Artists and Minimalism in the Nineties. She has had extensive international experience with art and artists in Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, Mexico, Japan, and Korea, as well as in Europe and the United States.

“I’m thrilled to be joining Carnegie Museum of Art as its new director,” Lynn Zelevansky said. “This is a museum with an incredible reputation, and it has enormous potential for making even greater contributions regionally, nationally, and internationally. It’s also an exciting time to be joining the Pittsburgh community. Pittsburgh is a city with an indomitable spirit; I’m so impressed with its ongoing cultural and economic vitality.”

Carnegie Museums began its search for a new director of Carnegie Museum of Art last summer, after longtime director Richard Armstrong announced he would be leaving the museum, and Pittsburgh. Armstrong is now the director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation in New York.

“Lynn has a rare and wonderful background, with her multitude of accomplishments at MOMA and LACMA,” said William E. Hunt, chair of the Carnegie Museum of Art board.

“She is well versed in the world of contemporary art while also possessing an extensive knowledge of all other art forms, and she is well respected by her fellow curators. Carnegie Museum of Art, like all art museums, must be strategic about its future during these times of change, and I know Lynn will be instrumental in leading us in new and exciting directions.”

Carnegie Museum of Art, one of the four Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, is nationally and internationally recognized for its distinguished collection of American and European works from the 16th century to the present. The Heinz Architectural Center, part of Carnegie Museum of Art, is dedicated to enhancing understanding of the physical environment through its exhibitions, collections, and public programs.

Founded by Andrew Carnegie in 1895, Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh is a collection of four distinctive museums dedicated to exploration through art and science: Carnegie Museum of Art, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Carnegie Science Center, and The Andy Warhol Museum. Collectively, the museums reached more than 1.4 million people in 2008, through exhibitions, educational programs, outreach activities, and special events.

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