In March, the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields welcomed Michael Vetter, PhD, as assistant curator of contemporary art.
In his new role, Vetter manages the IMA's contemporary art collection, which encompasses more than 900 works. Beyond the IMA Galleries, Vetter is responsible for the sculptures in The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park: 100 Acres.
“We are very excited for the energy that Dr. Vetter has brought to the Museum’s contemporary art program. He, in collaboration with our curatorial, exhibition, and interpretation teams, will help reimagine not only the reinstallation of the permanent collection, but also develop a comprehensive vision for contemporary art across campus,” said Dr. Preston Bautista, deputy director for Curatorial Affairs and Public Engagement.
Vetter plans to rethink how Newfields can make contemporary art relevant to a wide variety of guests within a traditional gallery setting and beyond. He looks forward to bringing works out of storage. “I think visitors will be surprised by some of the things in the Newfields collection," he said. "I hope to create some fresh and interesting narratives about the history of recent art.”
Vetter joined Newfields from the University of Maryland Art Gallery, where he most recently curated Progress and Harmony for Mankind: Art and Technology circa 1970. Vetter received his master’s degree in art history, as well as his doctorate, from the University of Maryland, College Park. He has also worked on the curatorial team at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC. There, he contributed to the 2014 reinstallation of the museum’s permanent collection, as well as the exhibitions Robert Irwin: All the Rules Will Change and Days of Endless Time.
He first became aware of the IMA at Newfields during his dissertation research on Robert Irwin, an American installation artist. He credits, in part, Irwin’s Light and Space III, the large contemporary light installation in the Pulliam Family Great Hall, to his interest in joining the Newfields curatorial staff.
“What I love about Newfields is that it offers so much potential to continue creating and showing boundary-breaking work,” Vetter said.• Michael Vetter will give a members-only talk