The Brooklyn Museum expands curatorial department with two new appointments
The First Art Newspaper on the Net    Established in 1996 Thursday, July 25, 2024

The Brooklyn Museum expands curatorial department with two new appointments
Annissa Malvoisin. Photo: Liz Ligon.

BROOKLYN, NY.- Reinforcing its dedication to the highest standards of excellence in collections and exhibitions, the Brooklyn Museum announced two new curatorial appointments. Pauline Vermare has been appointed Phillip and Edith Leonian Curator of Photography, and Annissa Malvoisin has been appointed Associate Curator for Arts of Africa.

“We are delighted to welcome Pauline and Annissa to our esteemed curatorial team at the Brooklyn Museum. They bring exceptional expertise and progressive approaches that will fortify our commitment to broadening narratives and fostering dialogue within the arts community. We look forward to their invaluable contributions as we continue to evolve and enrich our cultural offerings,” says Anne Pasternak, Shelby White and Leon Levy Director, Brooklyn Museum.

Vermare will join the staff on April 29, 2024. As the Phillip and Edith Leonian Curator of Photography, she will build on the legacy of one of the Brooklyn Museum’s most celebrated collections, leading programs in this diverse medium. She will propose, organize, and coordinate innovative, canon-expanding exhibitions of photography that draw from the Museum’s holdings, as well as from other institutions’ and private collections. As a member of the Museum’s curatorial team, Vermare will grow the photography collection by spearheading initiatives to acquire works of the highest quality, cultural and historical significance, and relevance to the Museum’s collecting policies.

“The Brooklyn Museum is a unique and invaluable institution that brings joy and inspiration to the communities it serves—and well beyond,” says Vermare. “I have long admired the Museum’s openness and its ability to engage with the social issues of our times. I am deeply honored and excited to join the Brooklyn Museum’s team and to further the institution’s commitment to photography and photographers in the years to come.”

Malvoisin joined the staff as Associate Curator for Arts of Africa in February 2024. Previously, she held the position of Bard Graduate Center / Brooklyn Museum Postdoctoral Fellow in the Arts of Africa for over two years, serving as co-curator of the exhibition Africa Fashion in 2023 alongside Ernestine White-Mifetu, Sills Foundation Curator of African Art. In her new role, Malvoisin will be integral to the organization and planning of new Arts of Africa galleries. She will also collaborate with White-Mifetu to strengthen the development, research, presentation, interpretation, and renown of the Museum’s collection of African art. Through special exhibitions, collection installations, public programs, publications, and digital and social media, this new curatorial position will focus on presenting a range of historical and contemporary mediums and cultures within the collection. Malvoisin will also collaborate with others on the curatorial team to engage and amplify the voices, narratives, and perspectives of Museum audiences.

“I am excited to continue my journey at such an incredible institution, fostering meaningful, awe-inspiring experiences for our local and global audiences,” says Malvoisin. “It is absolutely thrilling to be part of an innovative team dedicated to unique storytelling and high-level scholarship. I am eager to continue contributing to the Brooklyn Museum’s remarkable African art collection through interpretation that highlights the ancient world, the worldwide diaspora, and contemporary perspectives.”

Pauline Vermare

Pauline Vermare is a French American photography historian, curator, and writer based in Brooklyn. Vermare grew up in France, Japan, and Hong Kong. She holds master’s degrees in Japanese (INALCO, Paris), international relations (Sciences Po, Paris), and art history (Sorbonne, Paris), as well as a PhD in art history (Université Lumière, Lyon) focusing on the visual representation of Northern Ireland from 1969 to 2022. Vermare started her career in 2002 at the Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson in Paris and moved to New York in 2009 to work at the Museum of Modern Art, collaborating with Peter Galassi on the exhibition Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Modern Century. She then joined the Capa Archive at the International Center of Photography to work with Cynthia Young on The Mexican Suitcase—Rediscovered Spanish Civil War Negatives by Capa, Chim, and Taro. In 2017, she became the cultural director of Magnum Photos, New York. Her interviews with photographers and writings on photography have been included in many publications, such as Luce Lebart and Marie Robert’s A World History of Women Photographers (2020) and Charlotte Cotton’s Public, Private, Secret: On Photography and the Configuration of Self (2018). Over the years, Vermare has developed projects in the United States, Europe, and Japan, including All About Saul Leiter at the Bunkamura Museum, Tokyo (2017), Akihiko Okamura: The Memories of Others at Photo Museum Ireland, Dublin (2024), and I’m So Happy You Are Here, a publication and exhibition focusing on Japanese women photographers (forthcoming). In 2022, she received the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from French Minister of Culture Rima Abdul Malak. Vermare serves on the boards of the Saul Leiter Foundation, New York, and the Catherine Leroy Fund, Paris.

Annissa Malvoisin

Annissa Malvoisin, from Toronto, Canada, is a curator and scholar of ancient African history. Malvoisin received her PhD from the University of Toronto in the Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations (2024) and earned a master’s degree in museum studies from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Information (2016). Trained in archaeology and ceramic studies, Malvoisin is interested in a globalized ancient world from the perspective of African regions, and her research specialization is in material culture and trade. Her dissertation “Through the Sahara, Across the Red Sea: Trade Networks of Meroitic Fineware and Their Impact on Modern Museum Collections” investigates object biographies through the archaeological record and considers how these biographies influence the understanding of objects in museum collections. Her research has been supported by multiple grants and scholarships and published in forthcoming books (such as Ancient Pasts for Modern Audiences), conference proceedings (such as “Sudan Studies Research Conference”), exhibition catalogues (such as Africa and Byzantium), and journals. She has presented her research and given public lectures at conferences and universities internationally. In 2023, Malvoisin co-organized the symposium Exhibiting Africa: State of the Field of African Art and the Diaspora at the Bard Graduate Center and the Brooklyn Museum. She previously worked on the collections of Global Africa and Egypt and Nubia at the Royal Ontario Museum and as a ceramicist for the Bioarchaeology of Nubia Expedition at Arizona State University. Malvoisin sits on the board of the Council for Museum Anthropology and is a founding member of the William Leo Hansberry Society.

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