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Performa Makes Changes to Board of Directors, Adding Shirin Neshat and Promoting Rashid Johnson

Toby Devan Lewis named chair



The next Peforma is still a little under two years away, but changes are already afoot at the performance-art biennial, which revealed that it will make changes to its board of directors and inaugurate an advisory council.

Toby Devan Lewis has been appointed as board chair. Lewis takes the reins from Salon 94 founder Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn, who had been board chair since 2009, and who will continue to be on the board.

In a phone conversation, RoseLee Goldberg, the founder of Performa, said of Lewis, “She is a visionary—there’s no other way to describe her—and a philanthropist in that she understands the impact of a powerful idea. She was the first person that I spoke to when I came up with the idea for Performa ten years ago.”

Iranian artist Shirin Neshat has now been added to the board of directors, bringing the total number of members to 13, while New York–based artist Rashid Johnson has been named vice chair. According to Goldberg, “Performa is very process-driven, and the whole process is very artist-driven,” and so having two artists who have participated in Performa is helpful to the board, which she prefers to call a “think-tank.”

“I was impressed by Performa’s artist-first approach and their hands on involvement in helping realize my vision,” Johnson, who staged a Performa commission in 2013, said in a statement. “I look forward to helping continue the great legacy Performa has earned and helping it to grow as a resource for artists and a vehicle for producing and showcasing innovative performance-based works.”

The list of the members on the board of directors and the advisory council follows below.

Irving Benson
Todd Bishop
Amy Cappellazzo
Toby Devan Lewis
Wendy Fisher
RoseLee Goldberg
Jeanne Greenberg Rohatyn
Ronald Guttman
Barbara Hoffman
Rashid Johnson
Aditya Julka
Edward Tyler Nahem
Shirin Neshat

Laurie Beckelman
Concetta Duncan
Stephanie French
Michael Kantrow
Anne Bergeron

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