Our spring art preview featured 20 women cultural leaders in Washington, D.C. We wanted to amplify their voices in our online newsletters, spotlighting each of them individually. Our Monday, May 16 newsletter features Kaywin Feldman, Director of the National Gallery of Art.
THE GEORGETOWNER: DC should have a kind of “spring awakening” after 2 long years of Covid. What are you most looking forward to for your institution this season?
KAYWIN FELDMAN: We’re excited to have in-person events back! Our first in person the film schedule is April 2. The next exhibit to open is the landmark Afro-Atlantic Stories and to celebrate, we have dozens of free public programs. And then many other new exhibitions to follow. We have great programming coming up for 2022. And the East Building skylight renovation project will be completed in June and the building will reopen with new acquisitions installed in the majestic (and bright!) icon IM Pei all summer long. .
GEORGETOWNER: What led you to become a leader in your organization? Tell us a bit about your professional background and your inspirations along the way?
KF: The National Gallery is the fourth museum that I have had the honor of directing. I have directed small, medium and large museums from the East Coast to the West Coast and from the South to the North. My professional experience helps me in my current role to appreciate the needs and aspirations of the many art museums across the country. I am privileged to be inspired every day by the collection, staff and volunteers here at the National Gallery.
GEORGETOWNER: What are the biggest challenges for your organization?
KF: Our biggest challenges are probably the same as most – moving from the crisis position of the past two years to the “new normal”. We are trying to understand how a new “hybrid world” works for Gallery staff and for many of our public-facing activities, such as conferences and seminars.
GEORGETOWNER: How do you feel about being the first women to lead an arts institution?
KF: I am proud to be the first female director of the National Gallery and happy to be the last ‘first female director’ of the National Gallery of Art.
GEORGETOWNER: What are you most proud of having accomplished in your position?
KF: I am proud of the agility, courage and resilience of our team over the past two years and delighted with the program they have put in place to welcome our visitors back in the coming year.
For more information on the National Gallery of Art, go to here.