Dr. Rebecca Rabinow joins Richard Diebenkorn Foundation Board of Directors
October 23, 2018
Steven A. Nash, Ph.D., president of the Richard Diebenkorn Foundation, announced today the election of Dr. Rebecca Rabinow, the director of the Menil Collection in Houston, TX to its Board of Directors.
Prior to her appointment at the Menil, Dr. Rabinow dedicated her career to The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, NY. Over nearly three decades, she held a variety of positions, serving previously as the Leonard A. Lauder Curator of Modern Art and Curator in Charge of the Leonard A. Lauder Research Center for Modern Art.
“Rebecca is a noted scholar and museum leader with a proven record of accomplishment who will help us to advance our mission to expand knowledge and appreciation of Richard Diebenkorn,” said Dr. Nash, a Richard Diebenkorn scholar who co-organized Richard Diebenkorn: The Berkeley Years, 1953–1966 (2013) at the de Young Museum in San Francisco, CA and is an essayist in Richard Diebenkorn: The Catalogue Raisonné (Yale University Press, 2016). “An authority on the work of Henri Matisse, Rebecca has long been aware that the master artist was a lodestar for Richard Diebenkorn, holding for him the spark of modernity and lessons of pure painting. Interestingly, her The Steins Collect: Matisse, Picasso, and the Parisian Avant-Garde at The Met intersected with the life and art of Richard Diebenkorn. As a student at Stanford University, he would recall years later viewing tiers of paintings by Matisse, Paul Cézanne, and Pablo Picasso in the Palo Alto home of the Stein family.”
“I am delighted to join the board of the foundation and to widen knowledge of the legacy and times of Richard Diebenkorn,” said Dr. Rabinow.
As director of the Menil Collection, Dr. Rabinow has overseen the successful completion of a $121 million fundraising campaign and renovation of the museum’s Renzo Piano-designed main building, and this fall initiated a full year of rotating, permanent collection installations that highlight the museum’s most important works and also display some works for the very first time. In November 2018, Dr. Rabinow will open the Menil Drawing Institute—the first freestanding facility built expressly for the acquisition, exhibition, study, conservation, and storage of modern and contemporary drawings. The 30,000-square-foot, $40 million building will be inaugurated with The Condition of Being Here: Drawings by Jasper Johns, an exhibition spanning the artist’s career.
Previously at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, she organized a number of exhibitions, notably Cubism: The Leonard A. Lauder Collection (2014–15), Matisse, In Search of True Painting (2012–13), and The Steins Collect: Matisse, Picasso, and the Parisian Avant-Garde (2012). She has edited, co-edited, and written essays for the catalogues for these and other exhibitions as well as publishing numerous articles and lecturing widely. She also co-organized the 2007 renovation and reinstallation of The Met’s Galleries for Nineteenth- and Early Twentieth-Century European Paintings and Sculpture.
Raised in Houston, Dr. Rabinow earned her B.A. from Smith College, studied at the Sorbonne, and earned her M.A. and Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She is a Fellow of the Center for Curatorial Leadership.
Other Richard Diebenkorn Foundation Board of Directors members include: Dr. Colin B. Bailey, director of the Morgan Library & Museum in New York; Sarah C. Bancroft, an art historian, curator, and executive director of the James Rosenquist Foundation; Benjamin Grant, city planner, urban designer, curator, teacher, and urban design policy director at Spur; Leah Levy, director and trustee of the Jay DeFeo Foundation; Geoffrey Thomas, an attorney; David Watts, an estate planning attorney; and Mike Wilsey, a business executive, collector, and philanthropist.
About Richard Diebenkorn Foundation
The Richard Diebenkorn Foundation expands knowledge and fosters appreciation of the artist and his role in central artistic developments of the 20th century. The Foundation increases public access to Diebenkorn’s work and understanding of his legacy and times through support of exhibitions, loan of artworks, research, publications, archival services, and digital initiatives.
In 2016, the Foundation debuted Richard Diebenkorn: The Catalogue Raisonné (Yale University Press). This seminal 2,000 page reference contains more than 5,000 works illustrated in stunning new color photography and exhaustive documentation. The new diebenkorn.org provides unprecedented access to the artist’s work, archives, and information about exhibitions.
The artist is on view next year in Richard Diebenkorn: Beginnings, 1942–1955 at the Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art at Pepperdine University, Malibu, CA and the Academy Art Museum, Easton, MD. The 2018 venues included the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, CA, the David Owsley Museum of Art at Ball State University in Muncie, IN, and the Portland Art Museum in Portland, OR. Organized by the Richard Diebenkorn Foundation in conjunction with the Crocker’s Associate Director and Chief Curator Scott A. Shields, this traveling exhibition is the first to solely examine the work Diebenkorn made prior to his turn to figuration.
Earlier this month, the artist was on view in a special monographic and historic presentation by Van Doren Waxter, New York at Frieze Masters in Regent Park, London.