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Maria Balshaw is Tate's first female director

Maria Balshaw, the head of Manchester's acclaimed Whitworth Art Gallery, has been chosen to run the Tate art empire. Dr Balshaw will become the first female director in the Tate's 120-year history and will replace Sir Nicholas Serota, who has been at the helm since 1988.

 

She will take charge of the Tate Modern and Tate Britain in London as well as offshoots in Liverpool and St Ives. Under her stewardship, the Whitworth had an award-winning expansion in 2015. She also runs Manchester Art Gallery. Dr Balshaw said she will focus on developing the organisation's reputation as "artistically adventurous". She added: "I am tremendously excited to be leading Tate in the next chapter of its life. I look forward to developing Tate's reputation as the most artistically adventurous and culturally inclusive gallery in the world."

 

Lord Browne, chairman of the trustees of Tate, said: "The Trustees and I know that Maria has the vision, drive and stature to lead Tate into its next phase of development. We enthusiastically look forward to working with her as she does so."

 

Tate Modern alone gets 4.5 million visitors per year and has just opened a £260m new extension. Tate St Ives is currently closed for renovation and will reopen in March. When he announced his departure, Sir Nicholas set a challenge to his successor, saying Tate still has "the potential to reach broad audiences across the UK and abroad, through its own programmes, partnerships and online". Sir Nicholas will now become chairman of Arts Council England.

Photo Credit: 
artnews.com

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