Ringling Museum Names Dr. Matthew McLendon Associate Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art has appointed Dr. Matthew McLendon as the new Associate Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art. Prior to his appointment, Dr. McLendon, a native Floridian, was appointed the first Curator of Academic Initiatives at The George D. and Harriet W. Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Rollins College.

“Matthew brings a great wealth of knowledge coupled with a fresh and exciting perspective to the Ringling Museum during a significant expansion in exhibition and programming offerings,” said T. Marshal Rousseau, Interim Director for the Ringling Museum, “His recent experience at the Cornell Fine Arts Museum as well as his national and international connections will serve as a very valuable foundation for the modern and contemporary art initiatives here at the Ringling.”

Dr. McLendon is currently curating an installation of 20th century abstract art from the Ringling Museum’s permanent collection which will be on view in the Museum of Art’s Searing Wing beginning May 29, 2010. The exhibition will feature paintings, sculpture and works on paper from Franz Kline, Alexander Calder, Frank Stella, Vasilly Kandinsky, among others.

Dr. McLendon is also managing the 2010 permanent installation of the James Turrell Skyspace in the Art Museum’s Searing Wing, working closely with the artist and his representatives. He is overseeing all modern and contemporary special exhibitions for the Museum of Art.

Dr. Matthew McLendon is an alumnus of Florida State University where he received Bachelor of Art degrees in both Art History and Music. While at FSU, he was the first intern in the department of Interpretation and Education at Tate Britain, London. After graduating Phi Beta Kappa, Dr. McLendon returned to London to study at the Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London where he received his MA and PhD. While studying in London, Dr. McLendon was asked back to Tate Britain to act as Interim Curator of Adult Learning and was responsible for the public programming surrounding the 2002 Turner Prize.

While at the Cornell Fine Arts Museum, Dr. McLendon curated a number of exhibitions including Andy Warhol Personalities, a survey of Warhol’s Polaroid portrait studies and Michael Phillips & The Imfernal Method of William Blake, an investigation of Blake’s revolutionary printing techniques. While at Rollins, Dr. McLendon taught courses on European avant-gardism and visual culture theory in the Department of Art and Art History. He was responsible for facilitating the use of the museum by the faculty and students of Rollins College as well as the other institutes of higher education in Central Florida bringing in over 2,000 college students a year to the museum. As Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art for the Ringling Museum, he will teach graduate seminars for Florida State University through the Museum Studies Program.

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, Florida State University, is one of the largest museum/university complexes in the nation. It preserves the legacy of John and Mable Ringling, educating and enabling a large and diverse audience to experience and take delight in a world-renowned collection of fine art; Cà d’Zan, the Ringling historic mansion; the Circus Museums; the Original Asolo Theater; and historic architecture, courtyard, gardens and grounds overlooking Sarasota Bay.