October 11, 2018

Joseph Antenucci Becherer Appointed Director of Snite Museum of Art

SOUTH BEND, INDIANAJoseph Antenucci Becherer, the founding director and curator of the sculpture program at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park in Grand Rapids, Michigan, has been tapped the new director of the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame. Becherer will be responsible for organizing the museum’s exhibition and educational programs. He will also be heavily involved in the design of the university’s new 70,000-square-foot Raclin Murphy Museum of Art at Notre Dame, which is scheduled to open in 2021.

“We are thrilled to have someone of Joseph’s artistic vision, talents, and operational experience joining our team at Notre Dame,” said Maura Ryan, vice president and associate provost for faculty affairs, who oversaw the search committee for the institution’s new leadership. “We are confident he will continue and enhance the museum’s role in the university’s vibrant arts district that is taking shape on the southern edge of our campus and includes the Charles B. Hayes Family Sculpture Park, which opened in 2017.”

Becherer joined Meijer Gardens in 1999, and became its chief curator and vice president of sculpture and horticulture, collections and exhibitions in 2009. During his tenure, he organized numerous exhibitions and oversaw the debut of a new Japanese Garden designed by Hoichi Kurisu with the permanent installations by Jenny Holzer, Zhang Huan, Anish Kapoor, Masuyuki Koorida, David Nash, and Giuseppe Penone. He is also an educator, who teaches history of art at Michigan’s Aquinas College, where he teaches courses in Renaissance, Baroque and contemporary art, and a scholar of modern and contemporary sculpture.

Commenting on his new role, Becherer said: “Following in the great tradition that is the Snite Museum of Art, I look forward to working with donors, staff, faculty, students, and artists to create in the new Raclin Murphy Museum of Art one of the nation’s pre-eminent and most innovative university art museums.” The new institution will house the university’s permanent collection of more than 29,000 artworks.

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