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25 Sep 2019

Director's Message: Fall 2019

Dear Members and Friends,

As the American Folk Art Museum celebrates its thirtieth anniversary at Lincoln Square, we have taken the opportunity to expand our celebration of self-taught art across time and place. Our late summer exhibition Wall Power! Quilts from the Karen and Werner Gundersheimer Gift attracted guests from across the globe, and was highlighted through a review in Architectural Digest. We also inaugurated a new gallery that displays eye-catching artworks in the museum’s collection from the eighteenth century to the present.

Memory Palaces: Inside the Collection of Audrey B. Heckler, our blockbuster fall exhibition of modern and contemporary self-taught art, has already been promoted in The New York TimesNew York Magazine, and National Public Radio. This long-anticipated exhibition, which was curated by Valérie Rousseau, senior curator and curator of self-taught art and art brut, showcases the extraordinary collection of Audrey Heckler, and complements the museum’s recent publication The Hidden Art. I hope that you will join us for the dynamic series of artist talks, curator discussions, and educational workshops that accompany the exhibition throughout the autumn.

In November, the museum will welcome Emelie Gevalt as curator of folk art. Emelie’s professional experience includes work in the Art of the Americas department at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and leadership roles at Christie’s in the Estates, Appraisals, and Valuations Department. She is also on the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation curatorial track at the University of Delaware to obtain her PhD in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century decorative arts and material culture. We look forward to Emelie’s advancing the museum’s collection and originating important exhibitions and publications that define the field of folk art.

As always, your support of the museum has great impact on our programs. I hope that you will join us for our biggest annual fundraiser on October 7th at the Ziegfeld Ballroom in Manhattan. This year’s event, the Outsider Ball, honors longtime trustees and donors Audrey B. Heckler, Monty Blanchard, and Leslie Tcheyan. It will be a memorable and fun-filled evening with folk art enthusiasts!

With warm wishes,