A museum director’s perfect day in the city
This Yale-educated rising star has a reputation for enlivening institutions. She traveled cross-country last year, with husband and 10-year-olds in tow, and assumed the role of executive director at the Walters Art Museum, the first woman to hold this post since the museum’s founding in 1934.— RC
What brought you to Baltimore? I came as a result of a recruitment search by the Walters. When one of the great American art museums calls and asks you to come, you say “Yes, please!” I wanted to be a part of this city and the scene here, because both are quite remarkable.
First impressions of the Walters? Awe and inspiration. There is so much to discover. I could be here for years and feel as if I still haven’t scratched the surface of this collection.
What about Baltimore art? It’s deep and diverse. You have objects of tradition and quirky rebellion, and they are excellent at all levels. I know a lot of artists who are moving here from New York or London, because this city feels real, and Baltimore’s not commercialized or ossified.
Where do you take visitors? I try to blend urban, rural and quirky experiences. We go to the Inner Harbor to visit the Reginald F Lewis Museum, Hampden for ice cream at the Charmery and on the Loch Raven trail for a hike.
Favorite art destination? Paris. I lived there when I studied and worked. I had a desk that looked over Versailles. I love Paris, where you get a sense of a vibrant city, a city that lives with its art. That’s actually what Baltimore does. The art here is not only in the museums.