Carmen Gimenez Named Stephen and Nan Swid Curator of Twentieth-Century Art


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(NEW YORK, NY–October 9, 2009)—Richard Armstrong, Director, Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and Museum, announced today that Carmen Giménez has been named Stephen and Nan Swid Curator of Twentieth-Century Art, a position formerly held by the late Robert Rosenblum from 1996 to 2006. Giménez, who has been Curator of Twientieth-Century Art since 1989, will assume her new expanded position immediately.

“We are thrilled that Carmen will take on this important curatorial role at the Guggenheim,” said Armstrong. “Carmen has an exceptional eye and a wealth of knowledge. With the Swid family’s continued endowment of this position, Carmen will carry on her important and scholarly work and play a more active role in our international operations. This is a very exciting moment for the Guggenheim Museum.”

Internationally recognized for exhibitions of the highest quality, Giménez has organized some of the most critically acclaimed exhibitions of modern art, including:

Obras maestras de la colección Guggenheim. De Picasso a Pollock (Masterpieces of the Guggenheim Collection: From Picasso to Pollock) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Sezon Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, 1991)
Museo Guggenheim: Las últimas vanguardias 1940–1991 (The Guggenheim Museum: The Ultimate Avant-Garde 1940–1991) (Museo municipal, Palacete del Embarcadero and Nave Sotoliva, Santander, Spain, 1991)
Kandinsky Acuarelas: Colección del Museo Solomon R. Guggenheim y de la Fundacion Hilla von Rebay (Watercolors by Kandinsky at the Guggenheim Museum: A Selection from the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and the Hilla von Rebay Foundation) (Banco Bilbao Vizcaya, Madrid, 1991).
Picasso and the Age of Iron (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1993)
Paul Klee at the Guggenheim Museum (Banco Bilbao Vizcaya, Madrid, 1994)
Antoni Tápies (Guggenheim Museum Soho, New York, 1995)
A Century of Sculpture: The Nasher Collection (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1997)
Cristina Iglesias (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1997; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 1998–99)
Richard Serra (Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 1999)
The Global Guggenheim: Selections from the Extended Collection (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2001)
Calder: Gravity and Grace (Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 2003)
Constantin Brancusi: The Essence of Things (Tate Modern, London, 2004; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2004)
Richard Serra: The Matter of Time (Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 2005)
David Smith: A Centennial (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2006)
Spanish Painting from El Greco to Picasso: Time, Truth, and History (Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 2006–07)
Juan Muñoz (Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 2008)
All the Histories of Art: The Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna (Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 2008–09)
Cy Twombly (Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, 2008–09)
Abstraction and Empathy (Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin, 2009)

From 1983 to 1989, Giménez served as Executive Advisor to the Spanish Minister of Culture, Javier Solana. In this position she developed a program of international exhibitions for museums in Madrid, including the Museo arqueológico nacional, Museo Español de arte contemporáneo, Biblioteca nacional/Sala Ruiz-Picasso, Museo nacional del Prado, Palacio de Cristal, and Palacio de Velázquez. In 1984 she was appointed Director of the National Center for Exhibitions for the Spanish Ministry of Culture, where she established the center’s exhibition policy and organized various exhibitions, thus showcasing Spanish art at numerous important international venues. Thanks to this roster of international exhibitions, Spain became a significant part of the art world.

During this period, she proposed the creation of the Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía as an exhibition center for international artists and important collections of modern and contemporary art. She selected the 18th-century Hospital de San Carlos in Madrid to be converted into this new institution. In 1986 she curated the opening exhibition References and Identities: An Artistic Meeting in Time with the participation of Georg Baselitz, Eduardo Chillida, Antonio Saura, and Antoni Tàpies as well as Richard Serra and Cy Twombly, who realized a work in situ. She also developed a plan to promote young Spanish artists in international shows.

In 1987–88, as part of the Spanish Program for Cultural Activities Abroad (Programa Español de actividades culturales en el exterior, P.E.A.C.E.), a program Giménez conceived and organized in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, she organized a major retrospective of Spanish art with Francisco Calvo Serraller entitled Cinq siècles d’art espagnol, which was held at the Musée du Petit Palais and the Musée d’art moderne de la ville in Paris. Her other major shows of modern and contemporary art include:

Edward Munch (Las salas Pablo Ruiz-Picasso, Madrid, 1984)
Francis Picabia (Las salas Pablo Ruiz-Picasso, Madrid; Fundació “la Caixa,” Barcelona, 1985)
Juan Gris 1887–1927 (Las salas Pablo Ruiz-Picasso, Madrid, 1985)
Del Arte Povera a 1985 (From Arte Povera to 1985) (Palacio de Velázquez and Palacio de Cristal, Madrid, in collaboration with the Turin Ministry of Culture and Germano Celant, 1985)
Entre el objeto y la imagen: Escultura Británica contemporánea (Between the Object and Image: Contemporary British Sculpture) (Palacio de Velázquez, Madrid, in collaboration with the British Council, 1986)
Entre la geometría y el gesto: Escultura Norteamericana, 1965–76 (Between Geometry and Gesture: North American Sculpture, 1965–76) (Palacio de Velázquez, Madrid, in collaboration with the Spanish–North American Joint Committee for Cultural and Educational Cooperation, 1986)
Contrasts of Form: Geometric Abstract Art 1900–1980 (Las salas Pablo Ruiz-Picasso, Madrid, in collaboration with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1986)
Il Corso del cotello (The Course of the Knife) (Palacio de Cristal, Madrid, 1986)
Colección Sonnabend. 25 años de selección y actividad (The Sonnabend Collection: Twenty-five Years of Selections and Activity) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, in collaboration with CAPC Musée d’art contemporain, Bordeaux, 1987)
Arte minimal de la colección Panza (Minimalist Art from the Panza Collection) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, 1988)
Obras maestras de la colección Phillips (Masterpieces from the Phillips Collection) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, in collaboration with the Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C., 1988)
Henri Matisse. Pinturas y dibujos del Museo Pushkin, Moscú y del Hermitage, Leningrado (Henri Matisse: Painting and Drawings from the Pushkin Museum, Moscow, and the Hermitage, Leningrad) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, in collaboration with the Museu Picasso, Barcelona, 1988)
Colección Beyeler (The Beyeler Collection) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, 1989)
John Baldessari. Ni por esas (John Baldessari: Not Even So) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; CAPC Musée d’art contemporain, Bordeaux; IVAM – Instituto Valenciano de arte moderno – Centro Julio González, Valencia, 1989)
Philip Guston: Retrospectiva de pintura (Philip Guston: Painting Retrospective) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Palau de la Virreina, Barcelona, 1989)
Dadá y Constructivismo (Dada and Constructivism) (Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, in collaboration with the Seibu Museum of Art, Tokyo, 1988–89)

In the early 1990s, after coming to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Giménez laid the fundamental groundwork for a satellite institution in Spain, setting up the negotiations with the Basque government and paving the way for the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, which opened in 1997.

In the mid-1990s, Giménez worked with Pablo Picasso’s heir Christine Ruiz-Picasso, and later Bernard Ruiz-Picasso, on building the family’s collection. The collaboration with Christine led to the exhibition Picasso. Primera mirada, colección Christine Ruiz-Picasso (Picasso: First Look, Christine Ruiz-Picasso Collection, 1994–96) at the Palacio Episcopal, Málaga, Spain, and Mudejar Pavilion, Seville. In 1997 Giménez was appointed director for the creation of the Museo Picasso Málaga in Spain and oversaw the architectural renovation of the Palacio de Buenavista. Working with the old medieval urban fabric in which the palace is located, she respected and maintained its integrity for the new museum. She served as director of the museum from its opening in October 2003 until June 2004. In September 2003 she was awarded the Medalla de oro al mérito de las bellas artes (Gold Medal of Fine Arts) by the Spanish government, and in 2009 she was named Patron of the Museo nacional del Prado, Madrid.

Highlights of her many exhibitions focused on Spanish art include:

Spanish Art from the Sixteenth to Seventeenth Centuries (Seibu Museum of Art, Tokyo, 1985)
Spanish Masterpieces of the Twentieth Century: Picasso, Miró, Dalí, and Their Time (Seibu Museum of Art, Tokyo, 1989)
Picasso clásico (Classical Picasso) (Palacio Episcopal, Málaga, Spain, 1992–93)
Obras maestras del arte español. Museo de bellas artes de Budapest (Spanish Master Paintings from the Museum of Fine Arts of Budapest) (Museo de bellas artes, Bilbao, 1996)
Obras maestras de la galería de pinturas de Dulwich (Masterpieces of the Dulwich Picture Gallery) (Banco Bilbao Vizcaya, Madrid; Museo de bellas artes, Bilbao, 1999)
Picasso. Tradición y vanguardia (Picasso: Tradition and the Avant-Garde) (Museo nacional del Prado and Museo nacional centro de arte Reina Sofía, 2006)


October 9, 2009

Betsy Ennis, Director, Media and Public Relations
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Telephone: 212 423 3842 E-mail:

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