A leader shows that art shouldn't be seen solely through a Western lens:

When the curator Denise Murrell was looking for a museum a few years back to help her develop an exhibition about black models who influenced art history, she struck out at one institution after another. In New York, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, she recalled, never even responded.

Dr. Murrell ultimately presented her show - ''Posing Modernity'' : The Black Model From Manet and Matisse to Today'' - at the Wallach Art Gallery at Columbia University, where it opened to rave reviews last year and was hailed for its scholarship on African influences in modern art.

Recent week, the Metropolitan Museum of Art announced that it was hiring Dr. Murrell, who is  African-American, for the newly create full-time position of associate curator for  19th and 20th century art.

Her appointment is noteworthy, and not only because the Met has been historically lacking in curators of color. She is also one of the first hires made by the Met's director, Max Hollein, who is now one year into his tenure - and emblematic of  the multi-discipline, multiethnic direction in which he is steering one of the world's largest, most entrenched museums.

''I's a new day at the Met,'' said Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation, who championed Dr. Murrell.
''What it says about Max is is he is willing to do bold things, he is willing to disrupt the normative practices of the museum, he is going to innovate and transform.''

Mr. Hollein's efforts include his commission of two contemporary exhibitions by people of color that he has placed in prominent places.

Staring Dec 18, two monumental paintings by the Cree artist Kent Monkman, including one that reimagines the iconic 1851 oil painting ''Washington Crossing the Delaware'' with indigenous people steering the vessel - among them, the artist's gender-fluid alter ego - will go on view in the Great Hall.

In September, the Met opened its fifth Avenue facade niches for the first time with a series of bronze sculptures inspired by African women, by the Kenyan-born artist Wangechi Mutu.

The honor and serving of the latest global operational research on Museums and Arts and Artists, continues. !WOW! thanks author Robin Pogrebin.


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