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Speed Art Museum Names New Curator of Contemporary Art

Louisville's Speed Art Museum has hired a veteran curator from New Orleans to manage its contemporary art collection when it re-opens in spring 2016.


Miranda Lash, who currently works as the curator of contemporary works at the New Orleans Museum of Art, will start her new job next month, according to the Speed Art Museum.


The Speed is currently undergoing a $60 million renovation and expansion project, which has closed the main museum building for construction until 2016. "For years I have enjoyed exploring what contemporary art can do in the context of an encyclopedic collection, and as a connector between disparate communities," Lash said in a released statement.


Lash's departure from New Orleans made news in that city, with a local arts writer calling her move a "somber moment" for the arts community.


"Under Lash's tenure, the hundred-year-old neoclassic berg in City Park became one of the most happening pop culture venues in town," wrote Doug MacCash of The Times-Picayune newspaper. 


Lash, a Los Angeles native, arrived in New Orleans in 2008 and quickly broke down the "artistic sanctity of the old museum and the funky pop culture" of the city, he noted. 


In Louisville, Lash will work to fill the museum's new space before its re-opening.


The Speed broke ground on the expansion project in May 2013. The museum stands to gain 75,000 square-feet of new space, plus nearly 80,000 square-feet of renovated space.


"Her many talents — creating exceptional exhibitions, securing outstanding acquisitions, and curating outdoor spaces — will energize the Speed's new galleries for contemporary art, the museum's art park, and our exhibition program," Scott Erbes, Speed's chief curator and curator of decorative arts and design, said in a released statement.


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