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Amber Esseiva Appointed Curator-At-Large

HARLEM, NEW YORK, NY, May 26, 2022Thelma Golden, Director and Chief Curator of The Studio Museum in Harlem, today announced the appointment of Amber Esseiva as Curator-at-Large, a newly created position. Esseiva currently serves as Curator for the Institute of Contemporary Art at Virginia Commonwealth University and has extensive curatorial, programming, and strategic planning experience. In this new role, she will work closely with the Museum’s curatorial team to advise on exhibitions and acquisitions, manage artist relationships, and participate in the Museum’s mission-related artist advocacy work, all while fortifying her ongoing research.

Thelma Golden said, “It is a sincere pleasure to welcome Amber Esseiva to The Studio Museum in Harlem. Over her notable career, Amber has worked closely with artists across all disciplines, demonstrated a commitment to cross-departmental collaboration, developed large-scale commissions, and led efforts in advancing and applying ethical institutional practices. We are delighted to have her as a partner in this exciting and transformative moment of growth.”

Amber Esseiva said, “I am so thrilled to join the Studio Museum as Curator-at-Large. The Studio Museum’s legacy is one that I have always carried with me in my mind and heart and so to have the opportunity to apply my admiration toward the planning of the Museum’s new building is tremendous. I am honored to have a seat at the table among so many people I admire."

As Curator for the Institute for Contemporary Art at Virginia Commonwealth University, Esseiva organized numerous exhibitions, including Jeremy Toussaint-Baptiste: Set It Off  (October 2021–June 2022), Dineo Seshee Bopape: Ile aye, moya, là, ndokh...harmonic conversions  (September 2021–January 2022), and Kandis Williams: A Field  (November 2020–September 2021). In addition to her work at the Institute for Contemporary Art, Esseiva has served as a visiting lecturer for the University of California Los Angeles, Maryland Institute College of Art, American University, and Columbia University. Esseiva graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University and earned her master’s degree at the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College.

About The Studio Museum in Harlem

Founded in 1968 by a diverse group of artists, community activists, and philanthropists, The Studio Museum in Harlem is internationally known for its catalytic role in promoting the work of artists of African descent. The Studio Museum is now constructing a new home, designed by Adjaye Associates in collaboration with Cooper Robertson, at its longtime location on Manhattan’s West 125th Street. The building—the first created expressly for the institution’s program—will enable the Studio Museum to better serve a growing and diverse audience, provide additional educational opportunities for people of all ages, expand its program of world-renowned exhibitions, effectively display its singular collection, and strengthen its trailblazing Artist-in-Residence program. 

While closed for construction, the Studio Museum is working to deepen its roots in its neighborhood through inHarlem, a dynamic set of collaborative initiatives. The Museum’s groundbreaking exhibitions, thought-provoking conversations, and engaging art-making workshops continue at a variety of partner and satellite locations in Harlem and beyond. 

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The Studio Museum in Harlem

144 West 125th Street

New York, NY 10027

Elizabeth Karp-Evans

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Sara Ory

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Full Press Release

The Studio Museum In Harlem Announced Appointment Of Amber Esseiva, Curator-At-Large