The Museum of Modern Art this summer selected Barry Bergdoll ’77CC, ’86GSAS, chair of Columbia’s art history and archaeology department, as its chief curator of architecture and design. Bergdoll will assume the position January 1, 2007, after stepping down as department chair. (He will continue teaching one graduate course per year at Columbia.)
Bergdoll has written extensively about 18th-, 19th-, and 20th-century European and American architecture and has curated several major architectural exhibitions. Among the most celebrated was a survey of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Berlin works exhibited at MoMA and in Berlin, Barcelona, and London between 2001 and 2003. Earlier exhibitions include “Le Panthéon: Symbole des Révolutions,” organized by the Canadian Centre for Architecture and shown in Paris and Montréal in 1989 in conjunction with the bicentennial of the French Revolution, and “Les Vaudoyers: une dynastie d’architectes,” held at the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, in 1992.
The New York Times on June 21 wrote that Bergdoll’s appointment at MoMA was greeted with “a big sigh of relief. . . . [H]e has the kind of keen, analytical mind and nuanced view of history that could bring some much-needed intellectual heft to the museum’s architecture department.”
Bergdoll succeeds Terence Riley, who was top curator of architecture and design from 1992 until his departure in March to become director of the Miami Art Museum.