OKCMOA welcomes new curator of modern and contemporary art

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Francesca Giani has been named curator of modern and contemporary art at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. Giani brings five years of curatorial experience to OKCMOA. She was most recently from the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art at the University of Oklahoma.

“We are thrilled to have Francesca join our team and to grow the Museum’s expertise in modern and contemporary art,” said President and CEO E. Michael Whittington. “Our Washington Gallery of Modern Art collection is one of the highlights of our permanent collection, and we’re looking forward to hearing Francesca’s insights, as well as recommendations, on ways to expand and reinterpret our already formidable collection.”

Giani most recently worked as guest curator at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, for the exhibitions “Immortales: the Hall of Emperors of the Capitoline Museums” and “Galileo’s World: an Artful Observation of the Cosmos.” She was also a contributing author to the exhibition catalogue “Libertad de Expresión, The Art Museum of the Americas and Cold War Politics” (The University of Oklahoma, 2013).

“I came to the U.S. because the museum world here offered access to volunteer and intern opportunities not possible in my country at that point,” Giani, a native of Italy, said. “My internship and volunteer experience both in California and Oklahoma gave me a chance to gain invaluable experience in the education and curatorial departments of various institutions.”

Giani began her museum journey volunteering at the San Diego Museum of Art, but her first curatorial intern experience in Oklahoma was at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art in 2011. She received her bachelor’s degree in art of the Renaissance from the University of Naples, Italy and her master’s degree in art history from San Diego State University in 2011. Her master’s thesis discussed Italian collector of contemporary art, Giuseppe Panza, and issues of aesthetics in contemporary art tied to his collecting practices.

Giani is currently enrolled in the Art of the American West Ph.D. program at the University of Oklahoma and is conducting research on the California art movement of the 1960s known as “Light and Space Art.” She is mother to two young boys and speaks Italian and Spanish.