Allison Glenn, an associate curator at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas, has been named senior curator and director of public art at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. The senior curator position was most recently held by Valerie Cassel Oliver, who left the CAMH in 2017 for the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. Glenn will join the Texas institution on August 1.
Glenn is best known for the widely acclaimed exhibition “Promise, Witness, Remembrance,” currently on view at the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, Kentucky. That show focuses on the life and police killing of Breonna Taylor in 2020, and it was organized in collaboration with Taylor’s family. It features works by Amy Sherald, Lorna Simpson, Nari Ward, Nick Cave, Sam Gilliam, Hank Willis Thomas, Glenn Ligon, Kerry James Marshall, and others.
Glenn joined the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in 2018. Among her recent curatorial credits at that institution was the 2019 outdoor sculpture presentation “Color Field,” which traveled to the Baker Museum in Florida and the University of Houston. She was also part of the curatorial team for the survey “State of the Art 2020” at Crystal Bridges and the Momentary. Before her tenure at Crystal Bridges, Glenn was manager of publications and curatorial associate for the Prospect.4 in New Orleans in 2017.
“Working with multiple publics and diverse communities continues to be an important part of my work, and this leadership role at CAMH will afford the scope of vision to include directing a public art program that expands, decenters, and relocates the museum as a site,” Glenn said in a statement.
CAMH board chair Dillon Kyle said in a release, “Allison’s appointment at CAMH represents a watershed moment for the Museum at a time we are moving swiftly beyond our walls to truly engage the civic life of our community and city.”