The Nasher Museum is celebrating its first decade as a major center for the arts on Duke University’s campus and in the surrounding Research Triangle area. The museum organizes and presents leading-edge exhibitions that travel to institutions worldwide, most recently Archibald Motley: Jazz Age Modernist (2014), Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey (2013), The Vorticists: Rebel Artists in London and New York, 1914-1918 (2010) and Barkley L. Hendricks: Birth of the Cool (2008). The traveling exhibition El Greco to Velázquez: Art during the Reign of Philip III was named one of Time magazine’s top 10 shows of 2008. The strengths of the museum’s permanent collection are Medieval art, art of the Americas (largely pre-Columbian), Classical Antiquities and modern and contemporary art.

The museum’s contemporary collection features a growing list of artists, including Barkley L. Hendricks, Christian Marclay, Wangechi Mutu, Ai Weiwei, Fred Wilson and Lynette Yiadom-Boakye. Nearly 1 million people have visited the museum since it opened in 2005.


The 65,000-square-foot Nasher Museum was designed by architect Rafael Viñoly. The centerpiece of Viñoly’s modernist design is a dramatic 13,000-square-foot glass-and-steel roof rising to a height of 45 feet above the great hall. Five concrete pavilions fan out from a central courtyard to house three large gallery spaces, auditorium, two classrooms, shop and café. The museum presents a dynamic schedule of programs, including free Family Days, performing arts events, lectures, film series and social gatherings.


The Nasher Museum’s growing permanent collection includes some of today’s best contemporary art, with a rare focus on work by artists of African descent. Other major strengths in the collection include European medieval art, European and American paintings, Outsider art, classical antiquities, African art and ancient American (Pre-Columbian) art.


Formerly the Duke University Museum of Art, the museum was founded in 1969 with the acquisition of 200 medieval works from the Ernest Brummer Collection. The museum was housed in a former science building on the East Campus until the new building opened on Duke’s central campus in 2005. The museum was renamed the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, in honor of the late Raymond D. Nasher, Duke alumnus, collector and benefactor.

Mission Statement

The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University promotes engagement with the visual arts among a broad community including Duke students, faculty, and staff, the greater Durham community, the Triangle region, and the national and international art community. The museum is dedicated to an innovative approach, and presents collections, exhibitions, publications, and programs that attain the highest level of artistic excellence, stimulate intellectual discourse, enrich individual lives, and generate new knowledge in the service of society. Drawing on the resources of a leading research university, the museum serves as a laboratory for interdisciplinary approaches to embracing and understanding the visual arts.

Annual Report

studentsar2014Nasher 2014 Annual Report

Nasher 2013 Annual Report


Download the Nasher 2013 Annual Report
(56 pages, PDF format – 2.6M)

Download the Nasher Museum’s 2012 Annual Report
(54 pages, PDF format – 2.7M)

Download the Nasher Museum’s 2011 Annual Report
(29 pages, PDF format – 3.9M)

Download the Nasher Museum’s 2010 Annual Report
(44 pages, PDF format – 3.8M)

IMAGE: Duke students engage with Yinka Shonibare’s 2003 work, Scramble for Africa, an installation that reimagines the Berlin Conference (1884-85) that resulted in a continent separated and parceled out among European powers, creating divisions that led to conflict and bloodshed. The Pinnell Collection, Dallas, Texas. Commissioned by the Museum for African Art, New York. Photo by J Caldwell.

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EXHIBITIONS: Robert Rauschenberg, Autobiography (detail of panel 3), 1968. Offset lithograph on paper, overall dimensions: 66.13 x 145.5 inches (167.96 x 369.47cm), 66 1⁄8 x 48 3⁄4 inches each (167.96 x 123.83 cm). Collection of the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina. Gift of Marian B. Javits, 1991.15.1. © Robert Rauschenberg Foundation / Licensed by VAGA, New York, New York. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.

COLLECTION: Wangechi Mutu, Family Tree (detail), 2012. Suite of 13, mixed-media collage on paper, 20 x 14.25 inches (50.8 x 36.2 cm). Collection of the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University. Museum purchase with additional funds provided by Trent Carmichael (T’88, P’17), Blake Byrne (T’57), Marjorie and Michael Levine (T’84, P’16, P’19, P’19), Stefanie and Douglas Kahn (P’11, P’13), and Christen and Derek Wilson (T’86, B’90, P’15). Image courtesy of Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects. © Wangechi Mutu. Photo by Robert Wedemeyer.


The national Board of Advisors gives advice on policy and major fund raising initiatives and helps to guide the museum’s acquisitions for the permanent collection.

Nancy A. Nasher, L’79, Chair of the Board
Less Arnold, T’97
Christopher Bass, T’97
Cynthia Brodhead
E. Blake Byrne, T’57, Chair Emeritus
Trent Carmichael, T’88, P’17
Paula Cooper
Paula Hannaway Crown, T’80
Paula Flood
David J. Haemisegger
Valerie Hillings, T’93
Brenda La Grange Johnson, WC’61, P’96
Katherine Thorpe Kerr, T’04
David Lamond, T’97, JD’06
Gerrity Lansing, Jr., T’95
Michael J. Levine, T’84, P’16, P’19, P’19
Patricia Roderick Morton, T’77, P’06
Jack H. Neely, T’80
Katharine Lee Reid
Jason Lewis Rubell, T’91
Douglas Smooke, T’90
William L. True, T’77
Derek M. Wilson, T’86, B’90

Ex Officio members include Gail Belvett, Chair, Collections Committee; Sally Kornbluth, Provost; Scott Lindroth, Vice Provost for the Arts; Henry Sappenfield, Nasher Museum of Art Friends Board President; Sarah Schroth,  Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director; Richard J. Powell, John Spencer Bassett Professor of American, Afro-American and African Art, Art, Art History & Visual Studies; Sheila Dillon, Chair, Art, Art History and Visual Studies

Collections Committee members include the Nasher Board of Advisors; Frank Konhaus T’80; Kristine Stiles, France Family Professor of Art, Art History & Visual Studies,  Neil McWilliam, Walter H. Annenberg Professor of Art History.


The Nasher Museum Friends Board focuses on reaching out to new audiences, increasing the museum’s membership and providing ongoing annual support.

Henry Sappenfield, President
Brian Huffman, Secretary
Arthur H. Rogers, III, President, ex-officio
Lenore B. Behar, A.B.’59, Ph.D.’63, P’84, P’90, P’92, GP’14
Michelle B. Beischer
Gail M. Belvett
Diane Blakeney Bonner
Jennings Brody
Farnum Brown
Ruth W. Caccavale, A.B.’81, P’11
Ellen Cassilly
Deborah A. DeMott
Michael Goodmon
Nathan Isley
David P. Lindquist, A.M.’72
Mac McCaughan
Elizabeth Owen
Marjorie Brown Pierson
Doren Madey Pinnell, B.S.’74, M.Ed.’75, Ph.D.’79, P’08
Susan B. Rosenthal
Wendy Collin Sorin, P’96
Angela O. Terry
Carl P. Webb


The Faculty Advisory Committee provides a connection to new trends in research and teaching throughout the university and advises on program planning.

Kristine Stiles, Chair, France Family Professor of Art, Art History & Visual Studies
Srinivas Aravamudan, professor of English
Thavolia Glymph, Associate professor, African and African American Studies
Brigid Hogan, Professor and Chair, Department of Cell Biology
Elizabeth Johnson, assistant research professor, Neurobiology, School of Medicine
Scott Lindroth, Vice Provost for the Arts
Neil McWilliam, professor, Art, Art History & Visual Studies
William Noland, professor of the practice, Art, Art History & Visual Studies
Richard Powell, Dean of the Humanities and John Spencer Bassett Professor of American, Afro-American and African Art, Art, Art History & Visual Studies
Sumathi Ramaswamy, professor, History Department
Victoria Szabo, assistant research professor, Art, Art History & Visual Studies

Ex officio (Nasher Museum staff):
Sarah Schroth, Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director
Trevor Schoonmaker, Chief Curator and Patsy R. and Raymond D. Nasher Curator of Contemporary Art
Marianne Wardle, Andrew W. Mellon Curator of Academic Programs
Marshall Price, Nancy Hanks Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art
Molly Boarati, assistant curator of exhibitions
Erin Hanas, academic programs coordinator

NASHER MUSE 2015-2016

Nasher MUSE, the student advisory board, plans student events, hosts “Art for All” evenings and works to bring every Duke student to visit the museum at least once during their time at Duke.

Ryan Elizabeth Bennert, T’16, Co-Chair
Justin Sanduli, T’16, Co-Chair
Marianne Wardle, Nasher Museum Staff Liaison

Maiya Aiba, T’16
Avery Carmichael, T’17
Max Feidelson, T’16
Livia Greene, T’17
Annalise Johnson, T’16
Allie Kenny, T’17
Yuyi Li, T’17
Charlotte McKay, T’17
Rosemary Williams, T’16
Gary Yeh T’17

Jessica Ruhle


jruhleawardJessica Ruhle has been named “North Carolina Art Museum Educator of the Year” (2014-15) by the N.C. Art Education Association. This annual award recognizes museum educators who creatively engage all museum visitors, including students and teachers. Jessica was honored for her partnership with the East Durham Children’s Initiative and students at YE Smith Elementary School.

As part of the award, Jessica was also recognized for establishing Reflections: The Nasher Museum’s Alzheimer’s Project. This new initiative provides engaging and interactive museum tours to visitors who live with memory loss–and also their families and care partners.  Reflections is already receiving international attention. This year, Jessica was invited to present in Belfast at IdeasLab 2015 on the topic “Dementia, Arts and Culture.” She will also represent the Nasher Museum at the Creative Aging Symposium in Greensboro and at “The Creative Age: Creativity and Aging in America” in Washington, DC.

Jessica has been at the Nasher Museum since 2010. In the Education department, she has been responsible for K-12 tours, teacher workshops and Family Day events. She now leads the Reflections program and directs the gallery guide program.

Trevor Schoonmaker


Prospect New Orleans has appointed Trevor Schoonmaker as the artistic director of its fourth edition, scheduled to open in 2017. Trevor will continue in his role as Chief Curator and Patsy R. and Raymond D. Curator of Contemporary Art at the Nasher Museum. Prospect 4 is slated to open in New Orleans in the fall of 2017. Since joining the Nasher Museum in 2006 as its first curator of contemporary art, Trevor has been instrumental in developing the museum’s collection of contemporary art.

Past exhibitions curated by Trevor at the museum include Street Level: Mark Bradford, William Cordova & Robin Rhode (2007); the 2008 retrospective Barkley L. Hendricks: Birth of the Cool; Big Shots: Andy Warhol Polaroids (2009); The Record: Contemporary Art and Vinyl (2010); Building the Contemporary Collection: Five Years of Acquisitions (2011); Sound Vision: Contemporary Art from the Collection (2014); and the 2013 exhibition Wangechi Mutu: A Fantastic Journey. He is currently working on an in-depth exploration of the complex identity of the American South and the region’s profound influence on American culture. Trevor is a member of the board of directors for the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Inc., in New York.

Last fall, Trevor won a 2013 Indies Arts Award from INDY Week for his exceptional contributions to the arts in the Triangle.

Marshall Price

Marshall PriceMarshall Price has been appointed to the newly created position of curator of modern and contemporary art at the Nasher Museum.

Price comes to the museum from New York, where he has been curator of modern and contemporary art at the National Academy Museum for the past 11 years. At the Nasher Museum, Price will organize new exhibitions and programs and take a leading role with Duke faculty and students on special projects. He began his position as Nancy Hanks Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art in March, 2014. Price’s appointment rounds out the curatorial team led by Trevor Schoonmaker, Chief Curator and Patsy R. and Raymond D. Nasher Curator of Contemporary Art.

“Marshall brings tremendous experience to the Nasher Museum as an art historian and museum professional. He brought international attention to the National Academy Museum, infusing that venerable, 200-year-old institution with new art and programs,” said Sarah Schroth, Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director of the Nasher Museum. “He perfectly complements the expertise of our curators with his background in American modernism as well as international contemporary art.”

Price made a name for himself in the art world through his leading role at the National Academy Museum. He was instrumental in organizing a regular schedule of contemporary exhibitions, acquiring several hundred works of art and updating the National Academicians with the annual induction of some of the world’s best known contemporary artists.

He also created the Windows on Fifth series, which enlivened the museum’s Fifth Avenue façade, engaging pedestrians through digital and animation work by Julian Opie, Adam Chapman and Jennifer Steinkamp. His Sculpture in the Rotunda series began in 2011 with a large work by John Chamberlain.

He has edited many catalogues and publications to accompany exhibitions, including The Sight of Silence: John Cage’s Complete Watercolors (2012) and Jeffrey Gibson: Said the Pigeon to the Squirrel (2013).

“I have watched the Nasher Museum grow over the last nine years to become one of the country’s premier mid-size museums,” Price said. “I am thrilled to be part of the museum’s next decade — building the permanent collection, organizing exhibitions that travel the world, publishing original catalogues and working with Duke’s outstanding faculty and students.”

Price earned his Ph.D. from the City University of New York in 2011, specializing in American modernism. He earned a master’s degree in art history from Pennsylvania State University. Before arriving in New York, he held an assistant curator position at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art in California.

Kathleen Wright

Kathy Wright

Kathleen Wright, special events coordinator at the Nasher Museum, was awarded the lifetime achievement award by the Triangle Chapter of the National Association for Catering and Events for her “exceptional skill, dedication and professionalism” to the industry. Kathy has been a member of NACE since 1997, and has served as Triangle Chapter president, chair of the Chapter Presidents’ Council and on the national board of directors as a Regional Vice President.




For the first time since our building opened in 2005, we now devote two thirds of our gallery space to our own collection. I am so proud of our freshly reconfigured The New Galleries: A Collection Come to Light, a comprehensive and dynamic reinstallation of the museum’s collection. Eight new galleries are dedicated to specific collection areas highlighting many of the museum’s masterworks while illustrating a history of human creativity. I am especially delighted with a new gallery dedicated to art from Mesoamerica, with its chocolate walls and wall case filled with stunning ceramics. At long last, we are presenting many of the museum’s best African masks, sculpture and beadwork. Just beyond the entrance, festooned with gorgeous Navajo rugs (on view for the first time ever), you’ll find our new Incubator, a flexible space for rotating student- and faculty-curated exhibitions. The first Incubator installation, Ansel Adams photographs, was curated by two undergraduate interns.

Ribbon Cutting with Brodhead and Wilsons

Also in celebration of the museum’s 10th anniversary, we are presenting some of our most significant works from the contemporary collection. Reality of My Surroundings: The Contemporary Collection demonstrates the museum’s ongoing commitment to collecting contemporary work by global artists, with a focus on artists of African descent. This is a collaboration with the Ackland Art Museum at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the North Carolina Central Art Museum and the North Carolina Museum of Art, which are highlighting artists of color at the same time.

On February 11, please join me and the other local art museum directors for a lively conversation on collecting and presenting work by artists of African descent. The panel will include New York Times art critic Holland Cotter, Studio Museum in Harlem Director Thelma Golden, San Francisco art collector Pamela Joyner, New York gallery director Jack Shainman and Pérez Art Museum (Miami) Director Franklin Sirmans.

This is your museum, and we can all take pride in the depth of our collection!

Don’t miss Richard Mosse’s The Enclave, a beautiful, six-channel video shot in eastern Congo, a region that has been plagued by civil war, political instability and humanitarian crises for decades.

Please visit the beautiful mural by Odili Donald Odita on the Foster Street wall of the YMCA, entitled Time Bridge, inspired by the city of Durham. Our first public art project, commissioned for Nasher10, is already strengthening ties to our community in new ways. The mural visually connects to Odita’s wall painting in the Nasher, Shadow and Light (For Julian Francis Abele).

Before you visit the Nasher Museum, I invite you to peruse this website for stories and photographs of our events. A lively schedule of events, from curator talks to musical performances, can inspire visitors of all ages to make connections to great art. Please sign up for our e-newsletter to hear about this and other exciting events.

Because of the support and encouragement from Duke alumni, our members and visitors from Durham and around the world, the Nasher Museum is a place that welcomes and inspires the people who live, work and study here. Thank you!

To show your support for all that the Nasher has accomplished in one short decade, and help us plan for the next one, become a member or consider a gift. It will be deeply appreciated!!

Sarah Schroth
Mary D.B.T. and James H. Semans Director
Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University

TOP: At a festive opening ceremony, Duke President Richard H. Brodhead (right) cuts the Nasher10 ribbon at the entrance of The New Galleries with supporter Derek Wilson (T’86, B’90, P’15) – to the delight of Nasher Museum Director Sarah Schroth (second from right), Christen Wilson (second from left) and Trinity Wilson (T’15).

Nasher Museum exhibitions and programs are generously supported by the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation, the late Mary D.B.T. Semans and James H. Semans, the late Frank E. Hanscom III, The Duke Endowment, the Nancy Hanks Endowment, the Courtney Shives Art Museum Fund, the James Hustead Semans Memorial Fund, the Janine and J. Tomilson Hill Family Fund, the Trent A. Carmichael Fund for Community Education, the Neely Family Fund, the E. T. Rollins, Jr. and Frances P. Rollins Fund for the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, the Marilyn M. Arthur Fund, the Sarah Schroth Fund, the George W. and Viola Mitchell Fearnside Endowment Fund, the Gibby and Michael B. Waitzkin Fund, the K. Brantley and Maxine E. Watson Endowment Fund, the Victor and Lenore Behar Endowment Fund, the Margaret Elizabeth Collett Fund, the Nasher Museum of Art General Endowment, the Friends of the Nasher Museum of Art, and the Office of the President and the Office of the Provost, Duke University.