Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art announces curatorial appointment
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Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art announces curatorial appointment
Jared Quinton, Emily Hall Tremaine Associate Curator of Contemporary Art

HARTFORD, CONN.- The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art has announced the appointment of Jared Quinton as the Emily Hall Tremaine Associate Curator of Contemporary Art. Quinton, the Wadsworth’s interim curator of contemporary art since November 2022, is preparing to open the forthcoming Rules and Repetition: Conceptual Art at the Wadsworth (October 26, 2023–February 18, 2024). The exhibition presents iconic works by Sol LeWitt and other pioneering conceptual artists of the 1960s and ‘70s who developed and embraced serial repetition and other conceptualist strategies alongside more recent acquisitions by artists who adopted the earlier approaches to address identity, environment, and politics.

Quinton is also curator of Talia Chetrit / MATRIX 193 (opening October 6) and organized the three previous MATRIX exhibitions featuring Lisa Alvarado, Matt Paweski, and Stephanie Syjuco.

He is curator and co-organizer of several programs including (Hartford) Memory Space for Alvin Lucier (November 2023), a musical performance by Natural Information Society, and gallery talks with MATRIX artists. He was a speaker at the Wadsworth’s Art, AIDS, and Activism group discussion (2022).

“We are delighted to have Jared Quinton as part of our curatorial team. His demonstrated creativity, excellent acquisitions, and enthusiasm for the history of our contemporary collections have already proven to be great assets and we look forward to seeing what he will accomplish in his new post,” said Matthew Hargraves, Director of the Wadsworth.

Before joining the Wadsworth, Quinton organized exhibitions and programs at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, the Kitchen (NY), Terremoto La Postal (Mexico City), Gallery 44 (Toronto), Abrons Art Center (NY), the Whitney Museum of American Art (NY), and the Institute of Fine Arts (NY).

He writes for Artforum, Bomb magazine, the Brooklyn Rail, and art-agenda, and has contributed to exhibition catalogues for the Hammer Museum (Los Angeles), Blanton Museum (Austin, TX), MCA Chicago, and Prospect New Orleans. He has held the Marcia Reid Marsted and Jeffrey G. Marsted Curatorial Fellowship at the Wadsworth Atheneum, the Marjorie Susman Curatorial Fellowship at the MCA Chicago, and the Helena Rubinstein Curatorial Fellowship at the Whitney Independent Study Program and has been a guest critic at the University of Chicago, the University of Illinois Chicago, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He has an MA in art history from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, and a BA in art history from Williams College.

Regarding his appointment, Jared Quinton said, “I’m excited to join the Wadsworth Atheneum at such a pivotal moment and look forward to championing contemporary artists through our pioneering MATRIX program and world-class collection. With incredibly rich history, the Wadsworth is a dream context for a contemporary art curator.”

Since its opening in 1844, the Wadsworth Atheneum has presented artists of its own time, from Thomas Cole and Frederic Church to Salvador Dalí, Piet Mondrian, Andy Warhol, and Sol LeWitt. The Contemporary art collection encompasses works created from 1945 to the present with strong examples of Abstract Expressionism, Color Field painting, Pop art, Conceptual art, and recent movements in painting, sculpture, photography, and video. Supplemented by acquisitions from its groundbreaking MATRIX exhibition program—launched in 1975—the collection includes work by many past MATRIX artists, such as John Baldessari, Duane Hanson, Christian Jankowski, Ellsworth Kelly, Glenn Ligon, Lee Lozano, Robert Mapplethorpe, Cindy Sherman, Lorna Simpson, and William Wegman.

MATRIX, a changing series of contemporary art exhibitions, was initially funded as an experimental pilot project with a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Since its first exhibition in January 1975, MATRIX has shown more than 1,000 works of art by more than 160 artists. Half of the artists have been in their 30s or younger, and more than one-third did not have an affiliation with a commercial gallery at the time of their MATRIX experience.

From its inception, MATRIX has been a forum for art that is challenging, current, and sometimes controversial. Through clear explanation and thoughtful engagement with the viewer, MATRIX exhibitions call into question preconceptions about art and increase understanding of its possibilities. MATRIX has inspired more than 50 similar programs across the country at museums in Atlanta, Berkeley, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC.

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