The Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, California welcomes Irene Tsatsos as the new Director of Gallery Programs, a crucial leadership role forged by Jay Belloli, who retired this past June after 20 years of service to the Armory.
Irene Tsatsos joins Armory Center for the Arts
The Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena, California welcomes Irene Tsatsos as the new Director of Gallery Programs, a crucial leadership role forged by Jay Belloli, who retired this past June after 20 years of service to the Armory. Tsatsos brings with her over 20 years of curatorial expertise and proven cultural leadership.
With a background as a visual artist, Tsatsos has emerged as an artist-centered curator with a practice oriented toward artistic collaboration and production. From 1997 until 2005, Tsatsos was the executive director of Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE). Prior to that, she worked at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York where she coordinated the 1997 Biennial, noted for its uncharacteristic abundance of Los Angeles-based artists, including Paul McCarthy, Chris Burden, Charles Ray, Martin Kersels, Jennifer Pastor, Jason Rhoades, and Ed Ruscha. Between LACE and her Armory appointment, Tsatsos maintained an independent curatorial and writing practice, collaborating with individual artists and renowned institutions such as the Getty, the Annenberg Foundation, The Fowler Museum at UCLA, and The California Community Foundation.
The Armory Center for the Arts is a community-based, contemporary arts center in Pasadena CA, located in a renovated National Guard facility with over 5,000 square feet of exhibition space as well as public projects at sites throughout the San Gabriel valley. The Armory also offers robust, award-winning arts education programs for children, youth, and adults. A cultural leader in the region, the Armory actively cultivates and maintains a wide network of partnerships with a range of organizations, emphasizing art experience and art education as a vital human activity essential to community life. At the Armory's core is a conviction that making, teaching, and presenting art can transform individuals and communities, and that artists, through their practice, can serve as educators and advocates in this process.
Tsatsos cites a keen interest in the Armory's long-standing institutional commitment to the practice of "artist as educator" and a desire to expand this notion beyond its rich artist fellowship and studio programs. Drawing from these programs, she is exploring ways to embed critical inquiry and research practices systemically into Armory's curatorial initiatives and protocol—in other words, finding ways to create exhibitions that are generated from a place of research and education within the institution and supported by it, with a focus on raising questions for those involved in production as well as for visitors to the galleries.
Executive Director Scott Ward is thrilled to welcome Tsatsos to the Armory. "Irene possesses a unique combination of curatorial insight, leadership, administrative expertise, nonprofit experience, as well as a generous disposition. She will be important to the Armory's success for many years to come."
Under Tsatsos' leadership, 2011 exhibitions include Sympathetic Magic, a video-based group exhibition organized by Getty curator Catherine Taft, an exhibition organized by veteran photography curator Tim Wride, and a John M. White survey. The season will conclude with Speaking in Tongues: The Art of Wallace Berman and Robert Heinecken, organized by curators Claudia Bohn-Spector and Sam Mellon. This exhibition is part of the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945-1980 initiative documenting this important moment in the history of art in the United States through an unprecedented collaboration of museums and other cultural organizations all across Southern California.
For more information, visit the Armory's website at www.armoryarts.org