Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Arts Administrator - Thelma Golden

Thelma Golden has become a driving force in the art world. Since disrupting the status quo with her 1994 exhibition, Black Male: Representations of Masculinity in Contemporary American Art, Golden has continued to create challenging dialogues around art and artists, making her one of the most respected curators in America. After ten years at the Whitney Museum of American Art, one of the nation's premier art institutions, Golden took up a new challenge in 2000, joining the Studio Museum in Harlem and becoming executive director and chief curator in 2005.

Read more: Thelma Golden Biography - Fascinated by Museums as a Child, Earned National Reputation, Sparked Controversy

As a black woman curator in an overwhelming white male art world, Golden has long fostered art that burns with racial and gender issues. People are still talking about "Black Male: Representations of Masculinity in Contemporary Art," the show she organized in 1994 at the Whitney Museum, where she was an associate curator. At the time, she took a lot of heat, and clearly she's still defensive about it. "I made a conscious decision not to engage with any of the criticism," she says. "No less than 100 articles appeared the first week. How could I answer any of them? It took on a life of its own."

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