The Frick Pittsburgh announces new executive director |
Art & Museums

The Frick Pittsburgh announces new executive director

Mary Pickels
Courtesy of The Frick Pittsburgh
The Frick Pittsburgh announces its fourth executive director, Elizabeth E. Barker, who will assume her new position in December.

David Burstin, chair of The Frick Pittsburgh board of trustees, announces Elizabeth E. Barker as the museum’s fourth — and first woman — executive director.

Barker’s appointment follows a 9-month national search, Burstin says in a release, following former executive director Robin Nicholson’s departure for a position in Georgia.

Barker, who will assume her position on Dec. 1, has 25 years’ leadership and curatorial experience at renowned museums including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the British Museum and Yale Center for British Art.

She is a graduate of Yale University, and holds a doctoral degree in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, the release adds.

According to Burstin, Barker rose to the top of the candidates’ list throughout the interview process with her extensive background and enthusiasm for the position — and for the city of Pittsburgh.

She most recently served as Stanford Calderwood Director of the Boston Athenæum, the independent library and exhibition center founded in 1807. Burstin points to her key role in executing the board’s vision to re-imagine the cultural venue for contemporary audiences and position it for a sustainable future.

Her tenure at the Met includes spearheading a 2001 William Blake retrospective that became one of the year’s most highly attended exhibitions, featuring the Met’s first audio tour for families with children, and a reading and concert performance by the writer and musician Patti Smith.

“I am delighted to be joining The Frick Pittsburgh and honored to be able to build on the remarkable work of my predecessors, the dedicated board of trustees and talented staff. The opportunity to continue to help to feed the cultural soul of those who know and love The Frick, while welcoming, engaging and inspiring new audiences to this exceptional museum is tremendously exciting,” Barker adds in the release.

Burstin also expresses the board’s appreciation for interim executive director, and former Richard M. Scaife Director/CEO of The Westmoreland Museum of American Art, Judith Hansen O’Toole for her leadership during the transition.

Mary Pickels is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Mary at 724-836-5401, [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: AandE | Museums
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