Dayton Art Institute’s curator accepts role at nationally known museum

The Dayton Art Institute has announced that Chief Curator and Curator of European Art Dr. Aimee Marcereau DeGalan will be leaving the museum to take a position with the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Missouri.

“The DAI will forever be grateful for Aimee’s meaningful contributions to the museum and the community,” says The Dayton Art Institute’s Director and CEO Michael R. Roediger in a news release. “During her time at the museum, she has led the Curatorial Department and the Collections Committee, been a valued member of the museum’s leadership team, and been an integral part of the development of the museum’s Centennial Plan.”

DeGalan came to the museum in October 2012 as Curator of Collections and Exhibitions, having previously worked at the Fleming Museum of Art at the University of Vermont in Burlington. Some of the museum’s accomplishments under her leadership at The Dayton Art Institute include:

• Raising $100,000 for art conservation efforts, which resulted in major conservation treatments to seven significant European paintings, with funds remaining to acquire two rare pattern period-replica frames for 17th century paintings, and the glazing of multiple artworks.

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• Helping to steward and forward the museum’s permanent collection by accessioning 438 objects and deaccessioning 89 objects, and identifying approximately 190 objects as deaccession candidates.

• Bringing a total of 90 scholars to the museum to review and advise on the African, American, Asian, European, Glass, Native American and Photography collections.

• Strengthening the curatorial department by bringing two additional professionals to the team: Katherine Siegwarth, the Kettering Exhibition Coordinator and Curatorial Associate, and Peter Doebler, the Kettering Postdoctoral Assistant in Asian Art.

• She and the curatorial team presented and/or curated 24 exhibitions during her tenure, including original exhibitions such as “American Sampler: Grandma Moses and the Handicraft Tradition” and “Into the Ether: Contemporary Light Artists,” which received rave reviews and international press. Board member and founder of The Lange Family Experiencenter Pamela Houk recently stated that, “No other curator has presented the permanent collection and shared so many rarely seen objects so well.”

• Participating in the commitment of more than a million dollars in donor pledges. One in particular will assist with ongoing interactive electronic programming and presentation of the collection.

• Representing the museum in the Center for Curatorial Leadership program as a fellow in 2015.

• Securing the acquisition of a 17th Century Dutch ebonized frame, as well as executing, through a bequest, the purchase of an 18th century painting for museum’s collections.

DeGalan’s last day with the museum with be Sept. 30. She will assume the role of Louis L. and Adelaide C. Ward Senior Curator of European Arts at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. This endowed position leads the European Arts Division and presents an opportunity to work on senior-level research, exhibition, and catalogue projects while overseeing numerous curatorial departments.

“The Business Insider recently ranked the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art as one of the top 25 museums in America, and The Dayton Art Institute can be proud that one of our own is moving on to such a prestigious organization,” Roediger said.

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