Mellon Grant for New Initiatives in Curatorial Training

December 14, 2011

The Graduate Center of the City University of New York has been awarded a $500,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to fund New Initiatives in Curatorial Training, a three-year pilot project in the Ph.D. Program in Art History. The grant is the largest received by the Ph.D. Program in Art History since its founding in 1978.

Among the largest in the field with nearly two hundred students, this highly ranked doctoral program has a long-standing commitment to training future curators and other museum and arts professionals. The New Initiatives in Curatorial Training project will deepen and formalize that commitment while strengthening curatorial training in the established fields of European and North American art history and, especially, in the emerging areas—Latin American, Asian, African, pre-Columbian, and contemporary art.

The Mellon Foundation grant will help address the need for more focused curatorial training by facilitating student fellowships in New York area museums, supporting graduate seminars focused on the direct analysis of works of art in museums and galleries, and funding a yearlong seminar on curatorial practice culminating in a student-curated exhibition in the Graduate Center’s James Gallery.

President William P. Kelly said of the award: “This new initiative will not only enhance the already high caliber of the Ph.D. Program in Art History: it will also reinforce the long-standing connections between this institution and New York City’s museum community. This project will ensure that we continue to produce scholars and curators whose cutting-edge work will contribute to the city’s cultural vitality.”