Donna Gustafson is Andrew W. Mellon Liaison for Academic Programs and Curator at the Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers University, and also an Instructor for the Rutgers Early College Humanities Program, a program that helps high school students gain early exposure to college-level academics. Previously to joining the Zimmerli, she was Visiting Part-time Lecturer in the History of Art at Rutgers (2006-2008). She has held several museum positions including Curator and Chief Curator at the American Federation of Arts in New York City (1989-2001), and Director of Exhibitions at the Hunterdon Art Museum, in Clinton, New Jersey (2001-2005) where she organized many exhibitions including Almost Human: Dolls and Robots in Contemporary Art (2005); Correspondences: Poetry and Contemporary Art (2003); and Post-Systemic Art (2002). She was curator and author of Images from the World Between: The Circus in Twentieth-Century American Art (MIT Press, 2001); Poetry of Place: The Watercolors of Thomas Moran (American Federation of Arts, NY, 2001); The Jewelry of Tone Vigeland (Museum of Applied Art, Oslo, 1997); Transformative Portraits: Altered Identities in Contemporary Art (Lafayette College, 2006); curator of Water (Zimmerli Art Museum, 2010-2011) and at/around/beyond: Fluxus at Rutgers (Zimmerli Art Museum, 2011-1212). She has published widely on American and contemporary art, and given papers and lectures at the Whitney Museum of American Art, College Art Association, Cooper-Hewitt Museum of Design, Lafayette College, and the Wadsworth Athenaeum among others. She is co-chair of a College Art Association panel on Fluxus in 2012. She received her Ph.D. in art history from Rutgers.
Andrew W. Mellon Liaison for Academic Programs and Curator
Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers
REaCH Instructor (Rutgers Early College Humanities Program) 2008- 2011
School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers, New Brunswick
Visiting Part-time Lecturer in Art History Department, Rutgers
New Brunswick, September 2006 to July 2008
Director of Exhibitions, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ
June 2001-October 2005
Chief Curator, American Federation of Arts, New York, NY
July 1999 to June 2001
Curator of Exhibitions, American Federation of Arts
September 1989 to July 1999
Ph. D. Art History, Rutgers University, January 2010
“At Home in the 60s: Images of the Home in American Art 1960-1975”
Rutgers, Department of Art History, New Brunswick:
Co-taught with Dr. Susan Sidlauskas, Not About Face Identity and Appearance Past and Present, graduate exhibition seminar
Undergraduate: Introduction to Art History; American Art: 1600 to 1900; Modern American Art: 1876 to 1970; Junior/Senior Seminar: Artists’ Books in Twentieth-Century Art; Byrne First Year Seminar: Artists, Musicians, Poets in the Museum (with Gerry Beegan, Mason Gross School of the Arts); Inside the Museum (Honors Colloquium offered through the SAS Honors Program)
Exhibitions Organized at the Zimmerli Art Museum
Forthcoming: Striking Resemblance: The Changing Art of Portraiture (scheduled to open January 2014)
Rachel Perry Welty 24/7 January 28 – July 15, 2012 (traveling exhibition reconfigured for Zimmerli)
At/around/beyond: Fluxus at Rutgers September 24, 2011 – April 1, 2012
Water September 1, 2010 – January 2, 2011
Lalla Essaydi: Les Femmes du Maroc January 30 – June 6, 2010 (traveling exhibition)
A Parallel Presence: National Association of Women Artists, 1889 – 2009 (co-curated with Jeffrey Wechsler, Senior Curator) January 17 – April 12, 2009 and traveled to the UBS Gallery, New York May 14 – July 31, 2009
Selected Exhibitions Organized at the Hunterdon Museum of Art
Liminal Images: Recent Work by Jeanne Jaffe, 2005
The Elements: Fire, Water, Air, Earth: An Exhibition of Artists Books, 2005
Portraits of Amelia: Photographs by Robin Schwartz, 2005
Almost Human: Dolls and Robots in Contemporary Art, 2005
365: A Drawing Installation by Steven Gwon, 2005
Mars Zone: An Installation by John Goodyear, 2005
Inside Out: A Video Work by Connie Coleman and Alan Powell, 2004
Scenes from the Grand Opening: Woodcuts by Paul Bonelli, 2004
New Mythology: Recent Work by Sergei Tsvetkov, 2004
The Apparent Intersection of Near and Far: International Perspectives in Contemporary Art from New Jersey (part of Transcultural New Jersey), Hunterdon Museum of Art, 2004
Correspondences: Poetry and Contemporary Art, 2003
Extreme Landscape, 2003
Lisa Mackie: Armature of Sounds, 2003
Matt Schwede: Paper Hearts, Organic Tissue, 2003
The Drawings of John Patterson: Process, Reveries, and Accumulations, 2003
Abstract Photography, 2002
Jamie Fuller: Threshold/Transition, 2002
Fifty Years: The History and Collection of the Hunterdon Museum of Art, 2002
Post-Systemic Art, 2002.
Meghan Wood: Recent Sculpture, 2002.
Eileen Foti: Images of Extinction, 2002.
Jim Toia: groundwork, 2002.
Peter Arakawa: Recent Paintings, 2002.
Other Exhibitions Organized
Wes Sherman: Rethinking Landscape, Center for Contemporary Art, Bedminster, NJ, 2011
Jersey Bounce: Mapping a Curatorial Conversation with colleagues from Visual Arts Center, Montclair Art Museum, Seton Hall University, Visual Arts Center, Summit, NJ, 2011.
Atul Bhalla: Water Works, Grossman Gallery, Lafayette College, Easton, PA, September 2 –October 15, 2011.
Undercover: Disguise and Deception in (some) Contemporary Art, Arts Guild of Rahway, 2009.
The Gun Show: Images of Guns in Contemporary Art, Shore Institute of the Contemporary Arts, Long Branch, NJ, 2007.
Transformative Portraits: Altered Identities in Contemporary Art, Richard A. and Rissa W. Grossman Gallery, Lafayette College, Easton, PA, 2006.
Images of the World Between: The Circus in Twentieth-Century American Art, American Federation of Arts, American Federation of Arts, 2001. Traveled to the Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, CT; Ringling Museum, Sarasota, FL; Austin Museum of Art, Austin, TX
The Poetry of Place: Works on Paper by Thomas Moran from the Collection of the Gilcrease Museum, American Federation of Arts and the Gilcrease Museum, 2001. Traveled to Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska and the Frick Art Museum, Pittsburgh.
The Jewelry of Tone Vigeland, American Federation of Arts, 1996. Traveled to Wichita Center for the Arts, KS, Musée des arts décoratifs, Montreal, Canada, Elvehjem Museum of Art, Madison, WI, Currier Gallery of Art, Manchester, NH, Cooper-Hewitt National Museum of Design, NY.
Co-curator, ART what thou EAT: Images of Food in American Art, Edith C. Blum Art Institute, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, 1990. Traveled to the New-York Historical Society,
Surface Printing in the 1980s: Lithographs, Screenprints, and Monotypes from the Rutgers Archives for Printmaking Studios, Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers, New Brunswick, NJ, 1990.
Benjamin Benno, Zimmerli Art Museum at Rutgers, New Brunswick, NJ, 1988.
“Integrating Art and Everyday Life: Artists Working in the Gap between Art and Life,” Zimmerli Art Museum, June 6, 2012
Co-Chair of CAA Panel, “Fluxus Re-Viewed, Los Angeles, Feb. 23, 2012
“The Art of Letters: Ray Johnson’s Mail Art,” Friendship Roundtable at the Morgan Library, February 10, 2012.
“Conversation with Rachel Perry Welty,” Zimmerli Art Museum, February 1, 2012
“Looking Again at Claes Oldenburg’s Bedroom Ensemble,” Rutgers Art History Faculty Symposium, September 20, 2011
“Claes Oldenburg’s Bedroom Ensemble: Disruption and Transformation,” Fake and Real Symposium California State University, Sacramento, April 15, 2011.
“Reflection, Refraction and Passage: Views of Water,” Politics and Poetry of Water in Africa, Middle East and South Asia Symposium, Zimmerli Art Museum, November 3, 2010.
“Pop Art: A Portrait of America” Zimmerli Art Museum, October 24, 2008
“Artist Dialogue with Ilene Sunshine,” New York Public Library, October 20, 2008
“Altered Identities in Contemporary Art,” Lafayette College, November 9, 2006
“Images from the Greatest Show on Earth: The Circus in European and American Art,” Wadsworth Athenaeum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT, November 3, 2001.
“Structuring Transcendence: The Retrospective Exhibition as Contemporary Pilgrimage,”
College Art Association Meeting, Toronto, February 25-28, 1998.
“The Jeweler as Artist: Tone Vigeland,” The Cooper-Hewitt National Museum of Design, New York, June 18, 1997.
“Stuart Davis: The Development of a Modernist Style,” The Terra Museum of American Art, Chicago, IL, December 11, 1992.
“Benjamin Benno,” The Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, September 10, 1988.
“Food and Death: Vanitas in Pop Art,” Whitney Symposium on American Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, April 29, 1985.
Catalogues and Articles
In Plato’s Cave: Photographs by Donald Lokuta, HPGRP Gallery, NY, 20111.
Ilene Sunshine: out of line, The Kentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NY, 2010.
A Parallel Presence: National Association of Women Artists, 1889-2009, Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, 2008.
“Structuring Thought,” in Elizabeth Chapman, Ed Kerns: Word, City, Mind: A Universal Resonance, Martin Art Gallery, Muhlenberg College, PA, 2007.
Almost Human: Dolls and Robots in Contemporary Art, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ, 2005.
“The Apparent Intersection of Near and Far: International Perspectives in Contemporary Art from New Jersey,” in Transcultural New Jersey: Diverse Artists Shaping Culture and Communities vol. I, New Brunswick, NJ, 2004.
Correspondences: Poetry and Contemporary Art, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ, 2003
R. S. Mattison and D. Gustafson, Jim Toia: groundwork, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ, 2002.
Editor and principle author, Images from the World Between: The Circus in Twentieth-Century American Art, MIT Press and American Federation of Arts, Cambridge and New York, 2001.
The Poetry of Place: Works on Paper by Thomas Moran from the Collection of the Gilcrease Museum, American Federation of Arts, New York, 2001.
“Interview with Tone Vigeland,” in The Jewelry of Tone Vigeland, The Museum of
Applied Arts, Oslo, Norway, 1995; translated and reprinted in Tokyo Museum of Modern Art’s exhibition catalogue, Tone Vigeland, 1997.
Surface Printing in the 1980s: Lithographs, Screenprints, and Monotypes from the Rutgers Archives for Printmaking Studios, The Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutgers, University, New Brunswick, NJ, 1990.
Benjamin Benno, The Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, 1988.
“Food and Death: Vanitas in Pop Art,” Arts Magazine, February 1986, 90-93.
“Interview with Lloyd Goodrich by Donna Gustafson and Christine Laidlaw,” The Rutgers Art Review, 1986, 105-119.
Review of Sid Sachs, Seductive Subversions: Women Pop Artists, 1968-1968, University of the Arts/Abbevile Press, 2010 and Angela Stief, Power Up, Vienna Kunsthalle/Dumont Buchverlag, 2010, in Woman’s Art Journal, Fall/Winter 2011.
Review of T.J. Clarke, The Sight of Death, An Experiment in Art Writing, Yale University Press, 2006, in Commonweal Magazine, June 1, 2007, 22-23.
Review of Holly Pyne Connor, Off the Pedestal: Images of the New Woman in Sargent, Homer, and Chase, Rutgers University Press and the Newark Museum in Woman’s Art Journal, Fall/Winter 2006, 44-47.
Review of Jacquelynn Baas, Smile of the Buddha: Eastern Philosophies in Western Art from Monet to Today, University of California Press, 2006, in Commonweal Magazine, August 11, 2006, 22.
“Review of Van Gogh and Gauguin: The Search for Sacred Art” by Deborah Silverman Commonweal, March 2001.
“Review of Fairfield Porter: A Life in Art by Justin Spring,” Commonweal, April 2000.
“Review of Dreaming with His Eyes Closed: A Life of Diego Rivera by Patrick Marnham,” Commonweal, March 1999.
“New York Reviews: Reuben Nakian, Reynolds Beal” ARTnews, June 1998.
“New York Reviews: George Segal, Harvey Dinnerstein,” ARTnews, October 1997.
“National Reviews: New Brunswick NJ, Asian Traditions/Modern Expressions: Asian American Artists and Abstraction, 1945-1970,” ARTnews, July 1997.
“New York Reviews: Jose Clemente Orozco,” ARTnews, April 1997.
“New York Reviews: Barry Flanagan, Saint Clair Cemins, Doris Salcedo,“ Sculpture, July/August 1994.
Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Collaborative Initiative (Zimmerli Art Museum funding for two graduate exhibition seminars, publications, Mellon graduate curatorial interns over a five year term as collaborative initiative with Art History)
Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation (funding for exhibitions and programs)
Rachel Perry Welty 24/7, Zimmerli 2011
Water, Zimmerli 2010
Luce Fellowship for Dissertation Research in American Art, September 2008 – July 2009
Mitnick Dissertation Grant, Rutgers, May 2008
New Jersey Council for the Humanities (funding for exhibitions and catalogs)
Almost Human: Dolls and Robots in Contemporary Art, Hunterdon Museum of Art, 2005
Correspondences: Poetry and Contemporary Art, Hunterdon Museum of Art, 2003
A.P. Kirby Foundation, Inc. (funding for exhibition and catalog)
Jim Toia: groundwork, Hunterdon Museum of Art, 2002
NEA Fellowship at Zimmerli Art Museum, 1988-90
Institute for Research on Women, Rutgers, Executive Committee
College Art Association
Advisory Committee, the Center for Contemporary Art, NJ