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Staff + Supporters News

IN MEMORIAM: BARBARA KRETZER

The Weatherspoon Art Museum staff mourns the loss of Barbara Kretzer (1946-2020), an incredible member of our community for many years. A member of the Weatherspoon Arts Foundation, Barbara always supported the museum's programs and exhibitions, and her support of To The Hoop: Baseketball and Contemporary Art, which opened earlier in 2020 was invaluable to realizing the project. While attending the exhibition’s opening party, Barbara was particularly struck by Bill Bamberger's photographs of lone basketball hoops—among them an image of a hoop in a neighborhood near her childhood home in New Jersey—and was elated to meet the artist and learn more about his work. Barbara’s philanthropic support of many arts organizations in Greensboro has left a strong mark on the cultural life of our city. In Barbara's memory, may we all strive to carry on her legacy through our dedication to art and the Weatherspoon.

Photo: Lynn Donovan
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NANCY DOLL DRIVE-BY PARADE

Founded by Gregory Ivy in 1941, the Weatherspoon Art Museum has grown from being a university teaching gallery into a multi-gallery museum that is nationally recognized for its collections and exhibition program. It is considered one of the best collections of modern and contemporary art in the Southeast with over 6,000 works that represent all major art movements from the beginning of the 20th century to the present.

For the past 22 years, the museum’s galleries, collection, and programs have thrived and grown under the skillful leadership of Nancy Doll, museum director.

At the end of July (2020), Nancy will retire and with that transition in mind, UNCG’s Susan Kirby-Smith asked her to reflect on her time at the Weatherspoon and what’s to come next.

What do you remember about first coming to UNCG as museum director, and what impressions and memories will you take with you as you leave the role?

It was a difficult first year in that I had virtually no staff. And I had an empty exhibition slot to fill in April in the McDowell Gallery. Still, I was very happy to be there, to begin to know the campus and the community, and I felt very welcomed.

My first impression was that the building needed to be enlivened — so we began to show works from our wonderful collection in the atrium. And, in a few years, we were able to renovate the courtyard to create an atmosphere that would prepare visitors for what was inside.

It’s so hard to select just a few memories. One is the opening of the Andy Warhol print exhibition when we popped small champagne bottles to give to guests as they entered. Another was Claribel Cone’s 100th birthday party — complete with an actress dressed as that grande dame. And, the first time I was able to really spend time with Willem de Kooning’s Woman and understand what a fabulous painting it is, and that the Weatherspoon owned it!

How has the museum changed and grown during your time as director?

I felt that a big part of my “charge” was to open up the museum to a wider audience, to make it more engaging and responsive. Attendance has risen steadily, and it’s become much more diverse through a concerted effort to diversify our exhibitions, collections, and programs. I think people have come to trust that we’re committed to supporting difference and diversity in every way we can.

I believe the museum has grown to underscore its role as part of the academic mission of the University. In addition to providing tours for students, we have instituted a student gallery attendant program, and we work much more closely with other units and departments across campus to co-sponsor and collaborate on programs and to target faculty who may have a particular interest in including the content of exhibitions within their curricula.

Could you describe a few of your favorite things in or about the museum?

I love the Tom Otterness Frieze and the way it brings the huge volume of space in the building’s atrium down to human scale. I also love that vast soaring space with the blue roof and clerestory windows. I also love the spiraling staircase up to the second floor with the windows that bring light into the space. And, although it’s not always open — the tower that looks down on Tate and Spring Garden Streets.

I feel a sense of tranquility when I walk through the sculpture courtyard and into the museum.

What are your future plans?

I’m planning to stay in Greensboro (so I can still go to the museum!) and have a couple of projects in mind, both of which have been put on hold until travel is safer and other people are back to work. I might also do some consulting and have even considered training to be an appraiser. After 22 years, Greensboro has become home — I love my little house in Fisher Park and have made so many wonderful friends — I really don’t plan to leave in any foreseeable future.

Interview by Susan Kirby-Smith, University Communications. Parade photography by Martin W. Kane, University Communications
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WELCOME NEW DIRECTOR

The museum's staff and boards look forward to warmly welcoming Juliette Bianco as incoming Director starting September 1. Juliette succeeds Nancy Doll, who steps down on July 31 after 22 years of dedicated and successful service.

Juliette comes to UNCG from the Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth College, her undergraduate alma mater, where she has served in various leadership capacities, including Deputy Director since 2013. With 25 years of experience as an art museum professional, she is well prepared to lead the Weatherspoon as it expands its institutional and cultural impact regionally, nationally, and globally. Fittingly, Juliette’s scholarly interests focus on transformational leadership in higher education and university museums as centers of innovative teaching and learning and hubs for exploring diversity, creative partnerships, and the benefits of strategic planning.

Juliette holds a master’s degree in art history from the University of Chicago and is a graduate of the Getty Leadership Institute’s residence program for museum administrators. She completed the Doctor of Education degree at Northeastern University in 2020.

Photo: Eli Burakian–Dartmouth College


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Free Admission + Free Parking

TEMPORARY HOURS:
Tue-Sat: 10am-5pm
More info HERE.
Closed Sundays, Mondays + holidays

Weatherspoon Art Museum
UNC Greensboro
Corner of Spring Garden + Tate Streets
Greensboro, NC 27402
CONTACT US
weatherspoon@uncg.edu
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