Florida State alumna Alexis Assam (MA Art History 2018) – who was appointed the Regenia A. Perry Assistant Curator of Global Contemporary Art at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in November – was named by Culture Type to their 2021 On the Rise list for Museum Curators and Arts Leaders who Took on Notable Appointments.
Assam was previously the Constance E. Clayton Curatorial Fellow in the Department of Contemporary Art at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. There she was involved in the exhibitions Senga Nengudi: Topologies; Fault Lines: Contemporary Abstraction by Artists from South Asia; and Expanded Painting in the 1960s and 1970s. She also served as a member of the African American Art Working Group, collaborating on initiatives to diversify exhibitions, collections, and museum programming.
While completing her degrees in art history at Florida State University, Alexis worked as a museum assistant and educator at the Gadsden Art Center and Museum in Quincy, FL. In 2018–19 she served as the Romare Bearden Graduate Museum Fellow at the Saint Louis Art Museum, where she co-curated The Shape of Abstraction: Selections from the Ollie Collection. Alexis generously shares her expertise and advice with FSU art historians and aspiring museum professionals. In the spring of 2021 she served as a panelist in the inaugural Museum & Cultural Heritage roundtable session at the 37th Annual Art History Graduate Student Symposium.
I am so proud to be selected for this newly created position named for Regenia A. Perry, an important art historian and curator. The collection at VMFA and the museum’s commitment, advanced by its strategic plan, to diversify the collection by dedicating one-third of its acquisition funds to African and African American art speaks directly to my curatorial priorities. I look forward to working with the entire curatorial team and colleagues across the museum to present exhibitions that are timely, engaging and accessible to all VMFA visitors.
– Alexis Assam