Seth Feman, Manager of Interpretation at the Chrysler Museum of Art
since 2012, has been named Curator of Exhibitions and Acting Curator of Photography, Museum Director Erik Neil announced.
Feman joined the Chrysler just before it closed for expansion, renovation, and the reinstallation of the collection. As Manager of Interpretation, working with educators and curators, he oversaw the development of the thousands of labels, introductory panels, and other educational materials for the reopening of the Museum in May 2014. He is credited with creating an accessible, jargon-free standard for communicating important scholarly information about the Chrysler Collection to the Museums audiences.
In his new dual curatorial role, Feman is responsible for the study, care, interpretation and presentation of works of art in the Museums collection and incoming loan shows, as well as developing and curating exhibitions from the Chryslers photography collection.
Seth Femans new position as Curator of Exhibitions and Acting Curator of Photographs moves us forward in a number of ways, Chrysler Museum Director Erik Neil said. Seth brings to the curatorial department the unique perspective and cross-disciplinary approach that he has established since joining the staff. He has an incredibly wide range of scholarly interests and a unique ability to convey his enthusiasm about the collection and our exhibitions, both in person and in writing.
Presenting complex concepts in relatable terms and exploring a diverse variety of art historical themes is a hallmark of his style. He has published widely on topics ranging from Andrew Mellons art collecting in the 1920s, photojournalism in the 1930s, and mid-century modernist advertising to artist-teachers working in the 1960s, the 1990s culture wars, and Thomas Kinkades religious prints.
This summer, Feman will complete his Ph.D. in American Studies at The College of William & Mary, where he also earned his M.A. His dissertation project, which explores modernist painting, photography and urban design in Washington, D.C., has received support from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Getty Foundation, the Terra Foundation for American Art and the University of Chicago. In addition to his work at the Chrysler, the Vassar graduate also has worked as an educator at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and a writer for the Kennedy Center/VSA Arts, and has taught at Lewis and Clark College and at William & Mary.
The newly created position at the Chrysler capitalizes on Femans scholarship and strengths. He will continue to focus and refine the Museums art interpretation efforts. He will work closely with the education department to create engaging and interactive stations and initiatives for both the Chrysler Collection and visiting exhibitions.
As Curator of Exhibitions, Feman will work collaboratively across departments to manage every aspect of the many shows organized within the Museum or loaned from elsewhere. In addition, he will play an increasing role in the exhibition selection process, soliciting outside proposals and developing an expanded network of national and international collaborators.
As Acting Curator of Photography, he will lead the Museums efforts to develop a coherent strategy for collecting in this critical area. Feman will assure there is a regular schedule of exciting and challenging exhibitions from the Chryslers own important photography holdings and from other museums. An additional charge is to lead the Museums efforts towards improved cataloguing and better-organized storage and accessibility for all of the Chryslers collection works on paper.
I am delighted to take on new responsibilities at the Chrysler while continuing to work closely with wonderful colleagues and friends in the broader community, Feman said. Im proud of the dynamic exhibitions weve presented since our grand reopening, and Im excited to develop new, engaging shows in the years to come.