Walker Art Center Artistic Director Fionn Meade Leaves After Less Than Two Years

The museum cites "personal reasons."

Fionn Meade in 2009. © Patrick McMullan. Courtesy SHAUN MADER/PatrickMcMullan.com.

After having been named to the position in March 2015, Fionn Meade, artistic director at the Walker Art Center, has left for what the museum is calling personal reasons, reports the Star Tribune. He won’t be immediately replaced, says the museum.

One of Meade’s principal projects had been to lead the team organizing the upcoming exhibition “Merce Cunningham: Common Time,” drawing on the archives of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, which resides at the Walker. Opening February 8, it’s co-presented with the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and was co-curated with Philip Bither, Mary Coyne, and Joan Rothfuss.

With Jordan Carter, Meade also organized the group show “Question the Wall Itself,” open through May 12 and billed as examining “the ways that interior spaces and décor can be fundamental to the understanding of cultural identity.” Among the artists included are Marcel Broodthaers, Theaster Gates, Louise Lawler, and Rosemarie Trockel.

The Minneapolis museum created the post for Meade, after he had served for just ten months as senior curator of cross-disciplinary platforms, and it saw him overseeing visual and performing arts programming, as well as moving image, design and education, and public programs.

Museum director Olga Viso described the position at the time as akin to a chief curator role but “more befitting of the Walker in which there are multiple artistic platforms for both artists and audiences to activate and engage.”

Before heading to the Walker, Meade served as a curator at the Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, and SculptureCenter, in New York. His writing has appeared in publications like Artforum, Bidoun, Mousse, and Modern Painters.

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