April 24, 2014

Person of Interest

The New Curator Can Paint, Too

New in town: The Naples Museum of Art’s new director and chief curator is the former executive director and curator of the Ogunquit Museum of American Art in Maine.

Family: Wife, Gail; son, Zachary of Louisville, Ky.; daughter, Amanda Davis of Hamburg, N.J.

An artist’s artist: Culver’s own abstract-based art, painted in acrylics, has been featured in 11 one-man exhibitions. He is represented by galleries in Maine and Kentucky.

Hands-on training: “If I ran the world of teaching museum curators how to curate, everyone would have to take a studio class—painting, sculpting, ceramics—not just art history. I talk to artists as an artist, not just as an art historian.”

Favorite artists: Modernist Henri Matisse, Abstract Expressionist Joan Mitchell, British sculptor Henry Moore, and Realist and Abstractionist Fairfield Porter.

Easing in: “The Naples Museum plans two years ahead, sometimes three. I won’t be able to do much curating immediately.” He will curate his first show with the Will Barnet exhibit April 25 through June 28.

Broadening horizons: “The fun of being a curator is bringing audience’s attention to some unknown artists who deserve to be known. They might be older artists who are overlooked or young artists on the way up.”

Immediate outreach: Culver is creating the Naples Museum of Art Student Exhibition, a showcase of student art from grades 1 through 12 in schools throughout Collier County, to be held May 3-17 in the Drackett Gallery.

Creating a tradition: “We would like these children to bring their families, and once here, they’ll realize what a wonderful gem it is and see the rest of the museum.”

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