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LACMA hires Menil curator

September 18, 2009|Suzanne Muchnic

Franklin Sirmans, a high-profile curator of modern and contemporary art at the Menil Collection in Houston, has been appointed department head and curator of contemporary art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

He will assume his new position in January, succeeding Lynn Zelevansky, who recently resigned to direct the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh.

Sirmans, a graduate of Wesleyan University, is known as a critic, editor and writer as well as a curator. He was an editor at Flash Art and the Dia Center for the Arts in New York before moving to Houston. His exhibition credits include organizing "NeoHooDoo: Art for a Forgotten Faith," an examination of spirituality in contemporary art, and co-curating "Basquiat," a show of Jean-Michel Basquiat's painting, which appeared at L.A.'s Museum of Contemporary Art.

At LACMA, Sirmans will oversee a department that focuses on works made since 1968. He is also expected to use his writing skills to strengthen the museum's publication program.

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Suzanne Muchnic

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