20 curators who changed the way we think about art – ARTnews.com


Today the word “conservative” conjures up a scholar and jet-set figure who attends biennials around the world, but the work hasn’t always been glamorous, and in the mid-twentieth century, a group of prominent figures took over. helped define the profession as we know it today by working tirelessly behind the scenes. In most cases, their names were unfamiliar at the time, but their impact is considerable, shaping the way contemporary art was viewed in the years to come through groundbreaking surveys, modes of presentation world-class experiments and biennials.

This list examines the curators who helped define what the profession would become later. (For the purposes of this article, the scope was limited to figures who are deceased or no longer active.) Those included range from founders of major biennials to directors who have transformed institutions with their boundary-pushing exhibitions. .

Some of the curators here have argued for a fusion of art and politics, others have found innovative ways to present concept art, and still others have breathed new life into the art scenes of their countries. respective. Although not exhaustive, this list offers an overview of people who have identified various artistic movements and launched the careers of the artists involved. In the process, they have shown that conservation must not only lend itself to retrospectives and investigations, but that it can also encompass something close to an art form in itself.

A list of 20 of the most influential curators in art history follows below.

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