MIA Appoints New Curator of Southeast Asian Art

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The Minneapolis Institute of Art (MIA), home to one of the nation’s foremost collections of Asian art, announces the appointment of Risha K. Lee, PhD, as the new Jane Emison Assistant Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art. Lee will report to Liu Yang, PhD, head of the museum’s Department of Asian Art. This position has been made possible by a Mellon Challenge Grant, a National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant, and matching funds from Jane Emison. Lee will take up her position at the MIA on January 22, 2013.
“After an extensive international search, we are delighted that Dr. Lee will be joining the Department of Asian Art,” Liu said. “She brings considerable enthusiasm and expertise to the position, and we look forward to many notable acquisitions and exciting exhibitions in the near future.”
Lee comes to the MIA following a postdoctoral fellowship at the Institute for Southeast Asian Studies at the National University of Singapore. She received her MA (2004) and PhD (2012) from Columbia University. Her dissertation explores the transmission of art and ideas between India and China from the 9th through 13th centuries by Tamil merchants who plied the trade routes of the Indian Ocean and South China seas. She earned her undergraduate degree in art history from Harvard University (2002), and has taught at both the American University in Beirut and Columbia University. Lee’s museum experience includes a curatorial assistantship at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco (2004); a curatorial internship at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2002); and a curatorial assistantship at the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University (1998). Lee speaks Tamil and French and is also conversant in Mandarin and Italian.
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