Art Museum of WVU names new director

WVU Todd J. Tubutis
Todd J. Tubutis

As the second director of the Art Museum of West Virginia University, Todd J. Tubutis plans to build on the progress of establishing the museum as a vibrant cultural hub for both the campus and the community.

Tubutis, who succeeds the retired Joyce Ice as director, begins his tenure Feb. 25, the College of Creative Arts announced today.

“As we head into the museum’s fourth year of operation, we know Todd will bring his eagerness and many refreshing ideas to help us engage more West Virginians in experiencing the transformative power of art,” said College of Creative Arts Dean Keith Jackson.

Tubutis said he plans to continue compelling exhibitions and programs and grow the museum’s collections in meaningful ways.

“There is great potential to engage students and faculty in all disciplines, keeping the rigor and curiosity that is central to the academic endeavor at the heart of all that the museum does,” he said. “I look forward to getting to know Morgantown and the museum’s many dedicated supporters who champion its ongoing success.”

Tubutis joins the Art Museum of WVU from his position as associate director of the Sheldon Museum of Art at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where established a new visitors services division and served as lead curator for two concurrent exhibitions, “Conflict and Consequence: Photographing war and its Aftermath” and “An-Me Lê: 29 Palms,” for which he was also integral in securing more than $65,000 in project funding. Additionally, he launched Sheldon’s current strategic planning process and oversaw recent phases of a multi-year collection digitization project.

He was previously executive director of Blue Sky Gallery, a nonprofit venue in Portland, Oregon, dedicated to the presentation of international contemporary photography. Prior to joining Blue Sky in 2009, Tubutis was exhibition project director at the Field Museum in Chicago, where he led the design and institutional strategy teams for more than 20 temporary and permanent exhibitions of varied scope and subject matter. He has taught and conducted research in cultural and visual anthropology in the U.S., Canada and Hungary, and has contributed articles and reviews to Wisconsin Academy Review, Visual Anthropology, Exhibitionist, Exposure, Time Out Chicago and the Encyclopedia of Chicago.

Tubutis earned a master’s degree in anthropology from the University of British Columbia and received a bachelor’s degree in anthropology and museum studies from Beloit College, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa with departmental honors.