Independent Curators International supports the work of curators to help create stronger art communities through experimentation, collaboration, and international engagement.

Independent Curators International supports the work of curators to help create stronger art communities through experimentation, collaboration, and international engagement.

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Becky Nahom promoted to Director of Exhibitions

Becky Nahom. (Photo: Alex Munro)

On Sep 27, 2023

New York, NY, USA

Becky Nahom. (Photo: Alex Munro)

ICI is proud to announce that Becky Nahom has been promoted to Director of Exhibitions! Traveling exhibitions are a critical component of our efforts to advance curatorial practice, and over her tenure since 2017, Becky has forged deep relationships with many of our curators and collaborators across the world. She has worked with dozens of art spaces and hundreds of artists, as both Exhibitions Coordinator and Exhibitions Manager, helping to bring innovative curatorial perspectives to audiences globally. This promotion reflects both her long-term commitment to ICI and the many ways she has grown our unique exhibitions program.

With a master’s degree in curatorial practice and a deep commitment to the personal relationships that sustain each exhibition, Becky has developed an exhibitions program at ICI that puts the curator first. Since her start, Becky has been instrumental in two of ICI’s most influential traveling exhibitions to date: Soundings: An Exhibition in Five Parts (curated by Candice Hopkins and Dylan Robinson) and Axis Mundo: Queer Networks in Chicano L.A. (curated by C. Ondine Chavoya and David Evans Frantz). Through Soundings, Hopkins and Robinson built a cumulative and ever-changing community of artworks, shared experiences, and engagement grounded in concepts of Indigenous land and territory. It invites hosting art spaces and audiences to actively participate alongside the artists in the exhibition, listening to Indigenous histories and activating Indigenous resurgence in ways that move far beyond land acknowledgement.

Both experts in their field, Chavoya and Frantz demonstrated through Axis Mundo how the themes of chosen family and queer networks intersected in the years leading up to and after the AIDS crisis for a group of queer Chicanx artists in Los Angeles in the 1970s. By centering the strong ties to community held by the artists in the exhibition, Becky led the Axis Mundo tour to reflect a unique, yet larger shared experience at each location of its seven-venue tour from 2017-2022. The success and community-building of Axis Mundo inspired Chavoya and Frantz to curate a second exhibition together, Teddy Sandoval and the Butch Gardens School of Art, which ICI is co-organizing with the Vincent Price Art Museum at East Los Angeles College and the Williams College Museum of Art. As Director of Exhibitions, Becky leads this dynamic collaboration between three institutions and to hosting art spaces beyond, as it will travel through 2027.

This approach—a highly collaborative and experimental exhibition development process that centers curators and the communities they serve, coupled with an iterative method of touring that makes every presentation unique and personal for the hosting art spaces—has been central to the ICI exhibitions program since 1975, a legacy which Becky has continued throughout her tenure. She co-curated Publishing Against the Grain and Notes for Tomorrow, uniting curators from within our network. The interactive exhibitions traveled to a number of spaces that remain vital ICI collaborators, including CCA Lagos (Nigeria), The Contemporary At Blue Star (San Antonio, Texas), the Pera Museum (Istanbul, Turkey), and Koa Gallery at Kapi‘olani Community College (Honolulu, Hawaiʻi). She also helped develop the first three exhibitions curated by alumni of ICI’s Curatorial Intensive program: Never Spoken Again curated by David Ayala-Alfonso (New York 2010), States of Becoming curated by Fitsum Shebeshe (Addis Ababa 2014), and Actions for the Earth curated by Sharmila Wood (New York 2014). This initiative furthers the careers of Intensive alumni as the future of the curatorial field, showcases the incredible diversity of ICI’s vibrant global network, and provides infrastructure to art community leaders toward the development of important scholarly work.

ICI Executive and Artistic Director Renaud Proch says, “It has been an honor to work with Becky for the last seven years, advancing ICI’s mission and core values of experimentation, collaboration, accessibility, generosity, and international engagement through our traveling exhibitions. We are looking forward to this new chapter in ICI’s exhibitions program under her leadership, which will champion the curators and community leaders that are shaping the future of the field in powerful new ways.”

As Director of Exhibitions, Becky will oversee an evolving program of projects and work with a growing number of art spaces, on exhibitions that embrace experimentation and champion overlooked art historical narratives. She looks forward to empowering the people that make ICI’s shows possible and driving collaborations across the full spectrum of artistic and curatorial practice. In addition to those currently available to hosting venues, Becky is working closely with the curators of upcoming exhibitions that explore collectivism among a group of African photographers, diaspora and memory in the face of colonialism and erasure, and the force of agriculture across the entangled lands of the United States and Central America.

ICI’s traveling exhibitions provide access to contemporary art by bringing the work of curators to life for diverse publics through dynamic, generative, and inspiring presentations that are adaptable to many different local contexts. We are so fortunate to have Becky leading our efforts to support arts community leaders through exhibitions, and look forward to everything she will accomplish in this new role.

Becky Nahom

Becky Nahom is Director of Exhibitions at ICI.