Andria Derstine named AMAM director
Following a nationwide search, Andria Derstine — a member of the museum staff since 2006 — has been named the John G.W. Cowles Director of the Allen Memorial Art Museum (AMAM) at Oberlin College. She will begin her tenure on June 15.
Derstine first came to the AMAM in 2006 as the Curator of Western Art, and was promoted to Curator of Collections and Curator of European & American Art in 2009.
Prior to the AMAM, she was an Andrew W. Mellon Fellow and then assistant curator in the Department of European Art at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
Derstine earned her baccalaureate degree in history and literature at Harvard University in 1991. She earned her master’s degree (1996) and doctorate (2004) at New York University and also holds a certificate from the Center for Curatorial Leadership in partnership with Columbia University.
“I am absolutely delighted to have been offered the directorship,” Derstine said.
“I have a great love for the AMAM’s encyclopedic collection, distinguished history, and record of serious engagement with the Oberlin College curriculum. I look forward to working with the museum’s talented, energetic staff, and Oberlin College’s faculty and staff, to help the AMAM become ever more integral to the Oberlin student experience — while continuing to grow the collection, put on challenging exhibitions, and welcome the general public to our many free programs and events,” she said.
The museum will turn celebrate its centennial in 2017.
The success of the recent “Side by Side: Oberlin’s Masterworks” exhibitions, in which highlights of the AMAM’s collection were seen at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C., along with showings of AMAM works in Cleveland, can be in large part ascribed to Derstine.
A specialist in 17th- and 18th-century French and Italian painting, she also has a number of scholarly publications to her credit including co-author of the recently published “Allen Memorial Art Museum: Highlights from the Collection.”