Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev to Depart Castello di Rivoli


Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev, who has led Turin, Italy’s Castello di Rivoli since 2015, will retire at the end of 2023 following more than two decades of service to the institution, The Art Newspaper reports. The museum has launched a search for her replacement, who would ideally assume the role in January 2024.

Among the exhibitions Christov-Bakargiev has recently curated for the museum are those on digital artist Beeple, painter Giorgio de Chirico, “endurance” artist Anne Imhof, animator William Kentridge, and filmmaker Hito Steyerl. With Marianna Vecellio, she cocurated the group show “Artists in a Time of War,” currently on view at the institution. A major survey of the work of Michelangelo Pistoletto, honoring the aritst’s ninetieth birthday, is set to open there later this year.

Christov-Bakargie was chief curator at the Castello di Rivoli from 2002 to 2008, and served as its interim director for a period. As director, she oversaw a major expansion of the museum, completed in 2019, that allowed it to incorporate the $570 million Francesco Federico Cerruti Collection into its holdings, making it among the first contemporary art institutions to support an encyclopedic collection. When the Covid-19 pandemic arose, hitting Italy particularly hard, she turned the museum into a vaccination center, the first in Italy to serve this purpose.

Recognized in 2019 with the Audrey Irmas Award for Curatorial Excellence, presented by Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College in New York, Christov-Bakargiev is particularly renowned for her work as artistic director of Documenta 13 in 2012. The widely lauded edition of the event, typically held every five years in Kassel, under her guidance that year expanded to venues in Kabul, Afghanistan; Alexandria and Cairo, Egypt; and Banff, Canada.

From 2013 to 2015, Christov-Bakargiev served as the Edith Kreeger Wolf Distinguished Visiting Professor in Art Theory and Practice at Northwestern University in Illinois. Earlier roles include those of senior curator at New York’s MoMA PS1, artistic director of the Sixteenth Biennale of Sydney, and curator of the fourteenth edition of the Istanbul Biennial. Among the many works she has authored are the book Arte Povera (Phaidon Press, 1999) and the inaugural monographs on artists Janet Cardiff and William Kentridge.

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