James N. Wood, former director of the Art Institute of Chicago, will become president and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust in February. This is the replacement for Barry Munitz, who resigned under pressure last February. Once Wood arrives, the trust's interim leader, Deborah Marrow, will resume her post as director of the Getty Foundation. Modern Art Notes has a little more, and the press release is after the jump.
* Blogger on duty: Tyler Green already has a Q-and-A with Wood up at Modern Art Notes.
LOS ANGELES-The Board of Trustees of the J. Paul Getty Trust announced today that James N. Wood, an internationally recognized arts leader, has been named to serve as president and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust. Mr. Wood, who served as director and president of the Art Institute of Chicago from 1980-2004, will take up his position in February after he relocates to Los Angeles from Rhode Island.
Prior to directing the Art Institute of Chicago, one of the leading encyclopedic art museums in the world, Mr. Wood was the director of The St. Louis Art Museum (1975-1980), an adjunct professor of art history at SUNY at Buffalo and associate director of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, NY. He also held positions at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Currently, Mr. Wood sits on the boards of the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University, the Harvard University Art Museums, and the Museum of the Rhode Island School of Design. He is also president of the board of the Pulitzer Foundation for the Arts.
Mr. Wood, 65, received his B.A. with honors in Art History from Williams College in Williamstown, Mass. and his M.A. from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. He also studied at and holds a diploma from the University for Foreigners in Perugia, Italy. Mr. Wood's areas of specialization include European paintings and sculpture of the 16th to 20th centuries, American painting and sculpture of the 19th to 20th centuries, and photography, amongst others.
"We are very excited to welcome Jim Wood as the Getty Trust's new president and CEO. Jim is an outstanding leader who combines a deep scholarly knowledge and appreciation of the arts with extensive experience in leading a major arts institution," said Louise Bryson, chair of the Board of Trustees and head of the search committee. "The Getty's great strength in all aspects of the visual arts and education is grounding in the significant accomplishments and the talented staff of each of its programs. In Jim, we have found a leader who is eager to work with each of the four programs, and encourage continued collaboration among them, to further strengthen the Getty's position as one of the world's preeminent arts institutions. With his background at the Art Institute of Chicago, where he not only led two decades of growth in the collections, exhibits and staff, but also enhanced and fostered community relations and strengthened the educational mission, Jim is ideally suited to lead the Getty into the future."
The Board of Trustees selected Mr. Wood after an extensive search that began in May. He will assume leadership of the Getty Trust from Dr. Deborah Marrow, director of the Getty Foundation, who has served as interim president and CEO since February 2006.
"I am very pleased and proud to have been selected to head the J. Paul Getty Trust. The Getty offers a unique opportunity to apply my experience in helping to define the challenges facing one of our leading cultural institutions and to re-enforce its core mission and commitment to the visual arts. I look forward to working with and learning from the exceptional professional staff and Board of Trustees, determined to realize thoughtful change," said Mr. Wood.
He continued, "The cultural vitality of Los Angeles and the innovative leaders of its arts institutions are a strong attraction for my wife and me and a welcome incentive for the Getty to take an active civic role beyond its own walls."
In making the announcement, Louise Bryson added that she and the entire Board of Trustees are grateful to Deborah Marrow for serving as interim president and CEO during a very challenging time at the Getty. "Deborah stepped into the interim position at a difficult moment in the Getty's history. She has done a wonderful job of putting negative issues behind us, implementing a strong new approach to the way the Getty is governed, improving communications, and refocusing attention on the work of the Getty," said Ms. Bryson.
Dr. Marrow will resume her position as director of the Getty Foundation when Mr. Wood arrives in February.
"It has been an honor to serve as the Getty's interim president and CEO during the past year, and a privilege to lead such a talented staff. I am very proud of our accomplishments, both in terms of the extraordinary work of our four programs and the challenges we have faced. I am also extremely grateful to Joan Weinstein for serving as a superb interim director of the Getty Foundation during this period," said Deborah Marrow. "I am delighted by the appointment of such a distinguished arts leader as Jim Wood as our next CEO, and I welcome him and Emese to Los Angeles. I look forward to working with Jim and to assisting in any way that I can during the transition period."
Mr. Wood said he intends to immerse himself in gaining a full understanding of the accomplishments and potential of the four programs. "I want to make sure that the Getty's mission is fully articulated and that the Getty is achieving its full potential. My commitment is to ensure a collaborative environment in which we all work together to enhance that mission," said Mr. Wood.
The Board of Trustees Search Committee headed by Board Chair Louise Bryson, included Ramon Cortines, Joanne Kozberg, William Siart, Mark Siegel, Jay Wintrob, and former Trustees John Biggs and Agnes Gund. The Committee was assisted in conducting the search by the executive search firm Korn Ferry International.