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Press Release

Catherine David to Receive 2008 Award for Curatorial Excellence from CCS

Emily Darrow


ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—The Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College (CCS Bard) will present its 11th annual Award for Curatorial Excellence to Catherine David, independent curator, former artistic director of documenta X, and former director of Witte de With, Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam. David has been a powerful advocate for a global perspective with exhibitions that are provocative, challenging, and often intellectually demanding. She was selected by a panel of leading critics, curators, art experts, and alumni/ae on behalf of CCS Bard, who praised her most recent collaborations between institutions in the Arab world and the art world as particularly important for our time.

David will give a talk at in New York City (535 West 22nd Street) at 1:30 pm on April 16. The talk is free and open to the public; however, reservations are recommended. Call 845.758.7598 or e-mail

About the Award
Each year the Center for Curatorial Studies celebrates the individual achievements of a leading curator or curators whose lasting contributions have shaped the way we conceive of exhibitionmaking today. Past recipients of the award include Harald Szeemann (1998), Marcia Tucker (1999), Kasper König (2000), Paul Schimmel (2001), Suzanne Ghez (2002), Kynaston McShine (2003), Walter Hopps (2004), Kathy Halbreich and Mari Carmen Ramírez (2005), Lynne Cooke and Vasif Kortun (2006), and Alanna Heiss (2007). This award reflects the Center’s commitment to recognizing individuals who have demonstrated new thinking, bold vision, and dedicated service to the field of exhibition practice. The formal presentation of the 2008 award by renowned photographer Jeff Wall will be made at a gala dinner on April 16 at Gotham Hall (1356 Broadway at 36th Street) in New York City. For additional information and gala reservations, call 845-758-7414 or e-mail


Catherine David
Catherine David, former artistic director of documenta x and former director of Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam, is one of the most groundbreaking curators working in Europe today. She began her career as a curator at the National Museum of Modern Art at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris in the 1980s. Through her work with documenta x and Witte de With, she has endeavored to create a conversation with the audience through the ideas, creativity, and processes of artists. She presents exhibitions with a global perspective, working with an emerging community of artists from Latin America and the Middle East. Her highly acclaimed and controversial projects, Contemporary Arab Representations, encouraged an invaluable exchange between the Arab world and the art world and perhaps helped to change some perspectives within both communities through seminars, publications, and performances. David has also taught at Humboldt University in Berlin.

About the Center for Curatorial Studies and the Hessel Museum of Art

The Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College (CCS Bard) is an exhibition and research center dedicated to the study of art and exhibition practices from the 1960s to the present day. The Center’s graduate program is specifically designed to deepen students’ understanding of the intellectual and practical tasks of curating exhibitions of contemporary art, particularly in the complex social and cultural situations of present-day arts institutions. With more than 9,500 square feet of gallery space and an extensive library and curatorial archive, CCS Bard offers students intellectual grounding and actual experience within a museum.

In November 2006, CCS Bard inaugurated the Hessel Museum of Art, a new 17,000-square-foot building for exhibitions curated from the Marieluise Hessel Collection of more than 1,700 contemporary works. The new museum features intimate rooms encircling two large central galleries, and is scaled so that approximately 10 to 15 percent of the collection can be shown at any one time. The Hessel Museum extends the reach of the CCS Bard exhibition program, providing a place to test out the possibilities for exhibition making, using the remarkable resources of the collection as a whole.

For further information, call the Center for Curatorial Studies at 845-758-7598, e-mail, or visit

Press Contact:

Emily M. Darrow


CCS Bard Contact:

Jaime Henderson


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To download high-resolution press photos,
click on thumbnail image below:
To download a pdf of the invitation to the
CCS Curatorial Award gala dinner,
click on thumbnail image below

Catherine David

Photo: Bob Goedewaagen



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This event was last updated on 04-17-2008