The Dayton Art Institute announces Mariah Postlewait as Kettering Curator of Photography and Special Projects

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The Dayton Art Institute announces Mariah Postlewait as Kettering Curator of Photography and Special Projects
Mariah Postlewait, Kettering Curator of Photography and Special Projects.

DAYTON, OHIO.- After an extensive national search, the Dayton Art Institute is proud to announce the hiring of Mariah Postlewait as the Kettering Curator of Photography and Special Projects. Postlewait brings curatorial, scholarly, and administrative experience to her new role, and will begin the position on Monday, February 6. She most recently served as the Director of the Learning Commons at the Pennsylvania College of Art & Design, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and is completing her dissertation at Binghamton University, New York. Postlewait’s interests, knowledge and enthusiasm complement those of the DAI’s curatorial department.

“Mariah has a strong background in the history of photography with hands-on studio knowledge as an accomplished photographer. She combines this with a keen interest in education,” said DAI Director and CEO, Michael R. Roediger. “She will be responsible for all aspects of display, interpretation, and acquisition of lens-based media. Mariah’s enthusiasm for the DAI—our collection, exhibitions, programs, and our future—is contagious. We all greatly look forward to working with her.”

“I am very excited to have Mariah Postlewait join the Dayton Art Institute,” said Jerry N. Smith, Chief Curator. “Mariah brings vast knowledge and valuable experience to our exceptional museum. Her willingness to collaborate with our staff to bring exciting exhibitions to our community and in adding photographic works to our collection gives me great confidence in what she will provide to the future of the DAI. She also demonstrates a strong interest in our IDEA work of making art experiences for all through inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility.”

Postlewait reports that “I’m thrilled to join the Dayton Art Institute curatorial staff and to have the opportunity to share my passion for photography with the Dayton community and beyond. From my first step in the interview process, I have felt welcomed and included in a way few organizations could accomplish. I am eager to bring the same kind of enthusiasm, quick intellect, and empathy to my work here.”
Postlewait’s accomplishments in curating past exhibitions and excellence in teaching mesh well with the DAI’s photography collection of more than 10,000 objects. Her curatorial interests include pursuing connections to local and regional history, elevating regional artists, crowd-sourced projects that involve the broader community and in building the collection of underrepresented artists.

In addition to the current pursuit of her PhD at Binghamton University, Postlewait holds her BA summa cum laude from Adrian College and her MA in Art History from Bowling Green State University. Her advisor at Binghamton is SUNY Distinguished Professor, Dr. John Tagg, the noted scholar of photography and art history. Her dissertation work explores Richard Avedon’s landmark series, In the American West.

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