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Harvard Art Museums Names Soyoung Lee Chief Curator

CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS—The Harvard Art Museums have appoint Soyoung Lee chief curator, effective September 24, 2018. Lee joins the Harvard Art Museums from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where since 2003 she has served as curator, associate curator, and assistant curator in the Department of Asian Art. Lee has also held positons on the Metropolitan Museum’s Diversity and Inclusion Task Force and on the Museum’s academic body, the Forum of Curator, Conservators, and Scientists, first as chair from 2016 to 2017 and as delegate to the museum’s board of trustees from 2017 to 2018. She is a trustee-at-large for the Association of Art Museum Curators and a 2018 fellow of the Center for Curatorial Leadership.

“We are welcoming Soyoung to our staff at an exciting time, as we further establish our dual role as a premier teaching institution and one of the major public art museums in the dynamic Boston cultural landscape,” said Martha Tedeschi, the Elizabeth and John Moors Cabot Director of the Harvard Art Museums. “We are thrilled to have such a well-respected and gifted art historian join our curatorial team. Her experience as both a leader and scholar will be great assets as we continue to develop distinctive exhibition, publishing, and interpretive programs that leverage the wide-ranging nature of the museum’s remarkable collections.”

As chief curator, Lee will oversee the museums’ curatorial divisions of Asian and Mediterranean Art, European and American Art, and Modern and Contemporary Art, as well as the museums’ 250,000-piece collection and collaborations with Harvard University faculty and postgraduate fellows. Lee will also be responsible for partnerships with campus organizations to present contemporary art, exhibitions, artists, and programs in dialogue with current issues. 

The Harvard Art Museums are comprised of the Fogg Art Musuem, the Busch-Reisinger Musuem, and the Arthur M. Sackler Musueums, along with four research centers: the Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, the Center for the Technical Study of Modern Art, the Harvard Art Museums Archives, and the Archaeological Exploration of Sardis.

“It is a tremendous honor to join the Harvard Art Museums, an institution with such incredible collections, history, and creativity,” Lee said. “I am delighted to work alongside Martha and the museums’ stellar staff and am excited by the opportunities to collaborate across this extraordinary university. While at the Met, I was fortunate to have been nurtured by a wealth of talented and generous colleagues. I look forward to bringing that experience to Harvard, to cultivate in the next generation the kind of passion for art and knowledge that can transform one’s life.”

June 14, 2018