The Taft Museum of Art in Cincinnati has announced a $5 million bequest from former board member Sallie Robinson Wadsworth to endow the position of chief curator.
Lynne D. Ambrosini, the current director of curatorial affairs and chief curator at the Taft, will serve as the museum's first deputy director and Sallie Robinson Wadsworth chief curator. The endowment will ensure that self-organized exhibitions are a priority for the museum and will enable Ambrosini to dedicate a significant percentage of her time to research and producing exhibitions and publications. An assistant curator will be hired to aid in exhibitions and curatorial work, increasing the curatorial department's headcount to four.
Robinson Wadsworth, who passed away in November, was a Cincinnati native and attended Smith College before becoming a member of the museum's first docent class (1971-72). She later served on the museum's board (1985- 2015) and in 2013 created the Sallie Robinson Wadsworth Endowment for Exhibitions as part of the Taft's $12 million endowment campaign. In 2016, she and her husband, Randolph, supported the first self-organized international exhibition at the museum, Daubigny, Monet, Van Gogh: Impressions of Landscape, as well as the associated research, catalog, and symposium. Robinson Wadsworth also served on the boards of many other arts organizations in the greater Cincinnati area.
"I am deeply honored to carry the new title that bears Sallie Robinson Wadsworth's name," said Ambrosini. "Over the past decades, she came to personify enlightened philanthropy in Cincinnati. Committed to advancing knowledge of the arts, Sallie combined immense generosity with a rare understanding of the role of scholarship in curatorial work; her presence has been inspirational to me and to my predecessors."