I have worked my entire professional life knowing only one boss, Betsy Broun. She retired yesterday after nearly 30 years at the helm of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. So I've been taking stock of her vision for the museum and how the ways we connect with people to tell stories of art in a citizen democracy are tied to her ideas about American art and contemporary society.
The Smithsonian American Art Museum is delighted to announce that Njideka Akunyili Crosby is the 2014 winner of our biennial James Dicke Contemporary Artist Prize. Akunyili Crosby was selected by an independent panel of jurors who wrote in their decision, "Her bold yet intimate paintings are among the most visually, conceptually, and technically exciting work being made today."
Staff at the museum have been working all week to carefully orchestrate moving a suite of monumental landscape paintings by Thomas Moran out of the Grand Salon at the museum's Renwick Gallery to our main building in the Penn Quarter neighborhood.