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Moore Acknowledges Valued Service of Departing Gallery Director & Launches National Search

PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Moore College of Art & Design announces that Rochelle F. Levy Director & Chief Curator Lorie Mertes will step down as director of The Galleries at Moore in mid-February. Mertes, who has lead the Galleries with distinction over the last three years, is relocating to North Carolina.

“It is with sadness and deep appreciation that I accept Lorie Mertes’ resignation,” says Dr. Happy Craven Fernandez, president of Moore College of Art & Design. “Lorie’s effective innovative leadership has significantly advanced the Galleries and the central mission of Moore to educate students for careers in art and design. Her creativity and vision have helped to expand exhibition space, strengthen community programs and outreach, as well as increase the visibility and broad appeal of The Galleries at Moore.”

Under Mertes’ leadership, The Galleries at Moore gained international and national attention with Philagrafika 2010: The Graphic Unconscious which brought to Moore five architecturally scaled projects by Gunilla Klingberg, Virgil Marti, Paul Morrison, Betsabeé Romero and Regina Silveira, pushing the boundaries of print and the display of art into non-traditional spaces. Mertes also created and produced many memorable exhibitions showcasing the work of some of Moore’s Visionary Woman Awardees, including Mary McFadden, Billie Tsien, and most recently, Judith Leiber and Wendy Ewald. Her series of exhibitions on the art and design of the bicycle brought in a record-breaking number of new visitors and visibility to Moore. This fall, she introduced Ewald’s Literacy Through Photography as a new multi-year Moore outreach program to Philadelphia schools and community groups.

President Fernandez is forming a committee to conduct a national search for the new Director and Chief Curator of The Galleries at Moore. Mertes will continue to serve as a consulting curator on special projects during the interim. Mertes’ last formal event as director will be a gallery opening on Friday, January 28, 2011 from 6 – 8 p.m. to celebrate the opening of 5 new exhibitions at Moore: Frances Trombly - Everything and Nothing, Jenny Drumgoole - Real Woman of Philadelphia, Mel Kadel - Spacing Awake, Conversations - Annual Alumnae Exhibition, and DesignLab - Sheila Frank '07 + Anne Schaefer.

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