Published: July 9, 2002
CLEVELAND, OHIO – Cleveland Museum of Art Director Katharine Lee Reid has announced the appointment of Charles L. Venable, PhD, director of collections and senior curator of decorative arts and design at the Dallas Museum of Art, as deputy director of collections and programs, effective September 1.
As deputy director, Venable will provide leadership for the museum’s curatorial, conservation, education, registration, exhibitions, publications, libraries and music departments. He also will work with other museum deputy directors, the chief information officer and director in implementing long- and short-term strategic plans and objectives. In setting the agenda and priorities for activities in these areas, Venable will ensure that they are balanced with regard to the mission, the goals of the strategic plan and, where relevant, with building and fundraising activities.
a position he maintains. In 1994, he was named deputy director and chief curator of the museum, serving as interim director from 1998 to 1999. In 2001, he was appointed to his curator position. His responsibilities include: budget development, long-range planning for collections, exhibitions and publications, acquisitions, interactions between the curatorial and education departments, as well as donor cultivations.
A native of Houston, Venable earned the bachelor’s degree cum laude in history and art history from Rice University in 1982. He then earned the master’s degree in fine and decorative arts from the Winterthur Program at the University of Delaware in 1986. He received his doctorate degree in American studies from Boston University in 1993.
His early training in the museum field occurred at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, where he served in various capacities in the early 1980s. From 1982 to 1983, he studied German architecture and design in Central Europe as a Thomas J. Watson International Fellow.
From 1984 to 1986, he was a Lois F. McNeil Fellow at the Winterthur Museum in Wilmington, Del. In 1989, he received the Charles F. Montgomery Award for Outstanding Scholarship. Granted an Attingham Fellowship for the study of British Art and Design in 1991, Venable was awarded the 1994 Charles F. Montgomery Book Prize for best decorative arts book published in North America.
A member of the American Association of Museums, Venable is also involved in the arts at the national, state and local levels. His participation includes serving on advisory boards for the Decorative Arts Society of the National Design Museum in New York and the Texas Governor’s Mansion in Austin. He is also a board member of the Arts District Friends Foundation in Dallas.
The award-winning author has written extensively on decorative arts and design. His publications include: China and Glass in America 1880-1980: From Table Top to TV Tray (2000); Silver in America, 1840-1940: A Century of Splendor, for which he won the Montgomery Prize in 1994; and American Furniture in the Bybee Collection, for which he won the Montgomery Award in 1989. Venable is the only author to have received both honors.
Venable also has organized numerous exhibitions, some of which are considered landmark exhibitions by scholars in the design field. Among the most notable are: “Art Deco and Streamline Modern Design 1920-1950” (2001); “Circa 1900: Design at the Turn of the Century” (2000); “China and Glass in America, 1880-1980: From Table Top to TV Tray” (2000); “Hot Cars, High Fashion, Cool Stuff: Designs of the 20th Century” (1996); “Silver in America, 1840-1940: A Century of Splendor” (1994); “Dallas Collects 20th Century American Crafts” (1992); and “200 Years of American Decorative Art from the Faith P. and Charles L. Bybee Collection” (1989).
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