New Executive Director Expected by Summer

Updated February 16, 2021

Greetings from JCCC! I hope the new year is off to a great start for you. As a supporter of our Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, I’m writing to share updates on exciting developments with our Museum.

We closed the year with a bittersweet farewell to Executive Director and Chief Curator Bruce Hartman who retired on December 31. Under Bruce’s 30 years of leadership, the former Gallery of Art and now Nerman Museum earned an international reputation for its innovative and progressive exhibitions, attendant educational programming, and extraordinary collection of over 1,900 works of diverse contemporary art.

Since 1990, Bruce organized major exhibitions for Jean Michel Basquiat, Dana Schutz, Kerry James Marshall, Elizabeth Murray, Ken Price, Betty Woodman, Ebony Patterson, Stanley Whitney, Nari Ward and numerous other nationally and internationally recognized artists. Often, these shows were among the first for now highly recognized artists. Equally, Bruce organized many shows for Kansas City-based and regional artists with exhibitions ranging from internationally recognized to emerging artists.

An internal hiring committee has been formed to review applicants for this position, with the Museum Advisory Board serving in an external review capacity. Following the position's posting last month, the search committee will conduct virtual interviews in March with finalists interviewed in-person on campus. We anticipate that will occur in April and May, should pandemic conditions improve, with the new Executive Director formally beginning this summer. As important Museum stakeholders, we will keep you updated on opportunities for participation.

As we move through this process, I have the honor of serving as Interim Executive Director of the Museum. It has been a true pleasure working with my experienced and talented colleagues on our Museum team. Currently, they are organizing virtual educational opportunities for students, providing online training to docents, and installing an outstanding permanent collection exhibition in our first-floor galleries. The Museum will be ready to open its doors as soon as conditions permit us to welcome a larger footprint on campus.

Thank you again for your continued support of our Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art. Wishing you a healthy and happy 2021!

Kate Allen
Interim Director