The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Appoints Ann Dumas of the Royal Academy of Arts, London, as Consulting Curator of European Art

Distinguished curator will steward exhibitions and collections, develop new initiatives for the MFAH and the Royal Academy, in this shared appointment

Institutional partnership aligns the exhibitions and curatorial resources of the MFAH and Royal Academy

Houston—June 25, 2019—Gary Tinterow, director of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, today announced the appointment of Ann Dumas as consulting curator of European art at the MFAH. A specialist in 19th- and early 20th-century art, Dumas is currently curator at the Royal Academy of Arts, London. She will begin her appointment at the MFAH in September 2019, dividing her time and responsibilities between Houston and London, in her dual role as MFAH consulting curator and Royal Academy curator.

“We are enormously pleased to announce this partnership with longtime colleagues at the Royal Academy,” said Tinterow. “Ann’s talent as a curator will no doubt bring projects at the highest level of expertise to both institutions.”

Tim Marlow, artistic director of the Royal Academy of Arts, added, “Ann Dumas is a world-class curator and the partnership between the RA and MFAH will give her a more expansive global stage on which to operate.”

“I am delighted to be taking up the position of consulting curator of European art at the MFAH,” said Dumas. “I’ve always admired their exhibition program, and it will be a privilege to work with their curatorial team.”

Dumas has been at the Royal Academy since 1999. Over the past 25 years, she has been responsible for a number of major international exhibitions, with a focus on her field, French 19th- and early 20th-century art. As guest curator Dumas co-organized The Private Collection of Edgar Degas (1997) at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, alongside Tinterow while he was a curator in New York before his appointment to the MFAH. Together, Dumas and Tinterow also co-curated Matisse: The Fabric of Dreams—His Art and His Textiles (2005) and Cézanne to Picasso: Ambroise Vollard, Patron of the Avant-Garde (2006).

Exhibitions curated by Dumas for the Royal Academy have included Van Gogh: The Artist and His Letters (2010) and Matisse in the Studio (2017). Dumas also co-curated From Russia: French and Russian Master Paintings 1870–1925 from Moscow and St. Petersburg (2008), Painting the Modern Garden: Monet to Matisse (2016), and Revolution: Russian Art 1917–1932 (2017). In addition to her exhibition projects, Dumas has acted as a consultant to a range of museums in Europe and the United States.

Dumas studied art history at the Courtauld Institute of Art, the University of London, and wrote her dissertation on the personal art collection of Edgar Degas. On graduating, she was awarded a Hilla von Rebay Research Fellowship at the Guggenheim Museum, New York, where she undertook in-depth research on the collection as well as on Surrealist paintings in the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice. In 2019, Dumas was awarded an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) for services to the Arts.

About the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Established in 1900, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, is among the 10 largest art museums in the United States, with an encyclopedic collection of nearly 70,000 works dating from antiquity to the present. The Museum’s Susan and Fayez S. Sarofim main campus comprises the Audrey Jones Beck Building, designed by Rafael Moneo and opened in 2000; the Caroline Wiess Law Building, originally designed by William Ward Watkin, with extensions by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe completed in 1958 and 1974; the Lillie and Hugh Roy Cullen Sculpture Garden, designed by Isamu Noguchi and opened in 1986; the Glassell School of Art, designed by Steven Holl Architects and opened in 2018; and The Brown Foundation, Inc. Plaza, designed by Deborah Nevins & Associates and opened in 2018. Additional spaces include a repertory cinema, two libraries, public archives, and facilities for conservation and storage. Nearby, two house museums—Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, and Rienzi—present American and European decorative arts. The MFAH is also home to the International Center for the Arts of the Americas (ICAA), a leading research institute for 20th-century Latin American and Latino art.

About the MFAH European Art Collection
The collection of European art comprises important paintings and sculpture from the 13th to early 20th century. The expansive galleries present ivories and sculpture from the late Middle Ages; panel paintings and bronzes from the Renaissance; and paintings and sculpture from the 17th to 19th century. Among the Renaissance highlights are Italian works by Fra Angelico and Sebastiano del Piombo, and Flemish masterpieces by Hans Memling and Rogier van der Weyden. Notable paintings of the Baroque period include examples by Orazio Gentileschi, Jan van Huysum, and Rembrandt. The 18th- and 19th-century galleries feature paintings by Canaletto, Jean-Siméon Chardin, Camille Corot, Gustave Courbet, Francisco de Goya, and Théodore Rousseau. On long-term loan from private collections are 17th-century Dutch and Flemish works as well as Italian Renaissance and Baroque paintings.

About the Royal Academy
The Royal Academy of Arts was founded by King George III in 1768. It has a unique position in being an independent, privately funded institution led by eminent artists and architects whose purpose is to be a clear, strong voice for art and artists. Its public programme promotes the creation, enjoyment and appreciation of the visual arts through exhibitions, education and debate.

The Royal Academy launched a new campus as part of the celebrations of its 250th anniversary year in 2018. Following this transformative redevelopment, designed by the internationally acclaimed architect Sir David Chipperfield RA and supported by the National Lottery, the new Royal Academy of Arts reveals more of the elements that make the RA unique—sharing with the public historic treasures from its Collection, the work of its Royal Academicians and the Royal Academy Schools, and its role as a centre for learning and debate about art and architecture—alongside its world-class exhibitions programme. 

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