Wednesday, June 03, 2009

An Interview with Lynn Boland

It takes only a couple of minutes with GMOA’s new Pierre Daura Curator of European Art Lynn Boland to recognize him as a wonderful addition to the GMOA staff.

Boland came into both his new job here at GMOA and the field of art history by what he calls serendipitous luck. Having moved to Athens while in high school, Boland attended UGA for his undergraduate degree. Boland’s initial intended major was music, but after some exploration, he settled on art history because of the interdisciplinary nature of the field, which appealed to his broad range of artistic interests.

It was on the recommendation of an advisor that Boland applied for and landed an internship at GMOA during his senior year. Placed in the development department, partly for his snappy dressing, Boland gained experience in and exposure to all aspects of museum operation. After finishing his undergrad degree, Boland was hired at GMOA as an administrative assistant and he worked this first job at the museum until heading off to graduate school in Austin, Texas.

In Austin, Boland developed his interest in modern European art into a dissertation on modern European art and music. Boland has harbored a passion for modern art and for the abstract since his days as an undergrad. He says it is the energy and the dynamism, along with the difficulty, of these works that inspires him to try to make this type of art accessible to a broader range of people. Rather than strictly an art historian, Boland sees himself as a cultural historian, someone interested in how visual culture fits into the larger cultural framework.

Boland’s choice to enter museum work instead of continuing as a teacher partially arises from his desire to keep expanding the range of his studies. He not only is extremely excited about being able to work with and promote the Daura collection, an invaluable resource he hopes to make more widely available, but also is looking forward to preparing the Cercle et CarrĂ© catalogue and exhibition. Next month these projects will take him across the Atlantic, to Spain and to France, for research.

Along with putting the finishing touches on his dissertation, Boland spends his time away from the museum either puttering around in his garden or playing the piano, both favorite hobbies of GMOA’s newest curator.

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