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Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art Appoints New Curator, Contemporary Art

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art announces the appointment of Lauren Haynes as Curator, Contemporary Art. Haynes will join the Museum in October as a key member of the curatorial team.

In her new role, Haynes will contribute to all activities related to the contemporary art program including exhibitions, collection development and presentation, and publications as well as community partnerships, public programs, and donor stewardship.

“We are delighted to welcome Lauren to the Museum this fall,” said Crystal Bridges Director of Curatorial Affairs, Margi Conrads. “She brings an acute eye and extensive experience, a hallmark of which has been innovative presentations and working with artists and collectors. Her passion and collaborative spirit will play an important role in connecting visitors to contemporary art at Crystal Bridges. Her unique experience will also complement efforts at our new arts venue, particularly her expertise in building artists-in-residence programs.”

“I am thrilled to be joining the Crystal Bridges team. I have closely watched all of the work being done there since the Museum’s founding and I look forward to helping grow the contemporary art program,” said Haynes. “Crystal Bridges and the Studio Museum share a commitment to bringing innovative and challenging artworks and exhibitions to broad and diverse audiences. I can’t wait to bring the perspective I’ve developed over the past ten years to Crystal Bridges and the Northwest Arkansas community.”

Haynes comes to Crystal Bridges from The Studio Museum in Harlem where, since 2006, she has served in progressively responsible roles and currently holds the position of Associate Curator, Permanent Collection, overseeing the care and collection of the permanent collection as well as acquisitions and exhibitions. A specialist in African American modern and contemporary art, she has curated numerous exhibitions including Alma Thomas (co-curated), currently on view at The Studio Museum; Speaking of People: Ebony, Jet and Contemporary Art; Stanley Whitney: Dance the Orange; and Carrie Mae Weems: The Museum Series. She has also overseen the Studio Museum’s noteworthy Artist-in-Residence program.

Haynes has authored several landmark catalogues such as The Bearden Project (2011), Speaking of People: Ebony, Jet and Contemporary Art (2014) and Stanley Whitney: Dance the Orange (2015) and Fore (2012; co-author). She has also contributed to: Gordon Parks: A Harlem Family 1967 (2012); Re: Collection (2010) and Harlem: A Century in Images (2010). Haynes’ innovative curatorial work has received favorable recognition in publications such as the New York Times, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and Art in America. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Art History from Oberlin College.

“Lauren is already an accomplished curator, and we look forward to her star continuing to rise at Crystal Bridges. Her experience and vision will inspire our audiences and make a great contribution to our growing, more inclusive contemporary program,” said Conrads.