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John Waters. Photo: Greg Gorman.
John Waters. Photo: Greg Gorman.

John Waters Named to Board of Baltimore Museum of Art

The Baltimore Museum of Art (BMA) yesterday announced five new board trustees, only one of whom will have a bathroom named after him at the institution. Cultural icon and Baltimore native John Waters was named to the board alongside Michael Ealy, Nupur Parekh Flynn, Lori N. Johnson, and Anne L. Stone. The five join a thirty-six-member board led by board chair Clair Zamoiski Segal and the BMA’s director, Christopher Bedford. The body is tasked with overseeing the museum’s governance program and in rallying support for its initiatives.

“I am very excited to welcome the five new trustees, whose variety of skills and experiences across the fields of art, education, entertainment, marketing, and management will assist us as we continue to find ways to better serve our community and fulfill the Baltimore Museum of Art’s mission,” Zamoiski Segal said in a statement. “I have no doubt that this new cohort of trustees will enhance the museum’s governance and leadership, and I look forward to sharing their commitment and passion for the BMA’s vision with the rest of the board.”

Bedford concurred, noting in a statement, “As we continue to expand our efforts to make the BMA a more equitable and inclusive institution, it is imperative that our board reflect this endeavor.”

Waters, an ardent champion of his hometown, late last year bequeathed 375 artworks and objects from his fine-art collection to the museum, receivable upon his death, with the stipulation that the museum name its east lobby bathrooms after him. Less shockingly, the domed room in the European art galleries will also be renamed the John Waters Rotunda. The museum in 2018 hosted a retrospective of his work, which spans film, writing, acting, sculpture, and photography, among other mediums.

Those coming to the table alongside the estimable Waters are not without their own talents. Ealy, a native of Silver Spring, Maryland, is an accomplished actor; Flynn is an entrepreneur and founding owner and CEO of Nupur LLC; Johnson is an associate professor of art history at Baltimore’s Morgan State University; and Stone, a Baltimore native, is an art collector and philanthropist who has long supported the city’s art scene.