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Kelly Kivland. Photo: Anna Herbst.
Kelly Kivland. Photo: Anna Herbst.

Kelly Kivland Named Chief Curator of Wexner Center for the Arts

Kelly Kivland has been announced as chief curator and director of exhibitions at the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio. Kivland was formerly a curator at Dia Art Foundation, New York, where she had worked since 2011, coming to that institution as a curatorial associate. In her new role, Kivland will work closely with Wexner Center director Johanna Burton, helping to conceive and stage exhibitions as well as overseeing commissions and visual arts residencies. Additionally, she will cultivate the institution’s audience and foster collaborations across the university, the central Ohio community, and beyond.

“With her multifaceted experience as a curator, administrator, and arts leader, Kivland feels exceptionally well suited to the Wex,” said Burton in a statement. “She’s comfortable exploring how different disciplines can work together harmoniously, she’s developed strong relationships with artists and peer institutions, and in her time at Dia she has helped drive internal efforts toward diversity, equity, access, and inclusivity—all of which will amplify the Wex’s mission and initiatives. We’re so excited to welcome her to the team.”

While at Dia, Kivland, who holds a BA in interarts and technology from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and an MA from the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, curated solo exhibitions and projects by Nancy Holt, Isabel Lewis, Steve Paxton, and Joëlle Tuerlinckx, among others. She additionally organized solo shows by Maren Hassinger and Joan Jonas, both of which are slated to open this year. Kivland was instrumental in stewarding two major works of Land art overseen by Dia—Holt’s 1976 Sun Tunnels and Robert Smithson’s 1970 Spiral Jetty, both in Utah—and notably produced the institution’s well-regarded Artists on Artists lecture series.

“Together with artists, community members, and colleagues, I look forward to developing programming that supports an active dialogue on the role of the center within Columbus and prioritizes direct engagement throughout the Ohio State campus as well as within city neighborhoods,” said Kivland in a statement. “With each project, I look forward to advancing critical discussions on the condition, and importance, of art today.”

Kivland will take up her new post at the Wexner Center on August 2.

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