Minneapolis, MN, June 30, 2014—The Minneapolis Institute of Art (MIA) today announced the appointment of Jill Ahlberg Yohe, as its new Assistant Curator of Native American Art in the department of Africa and the Americas (AAA). Dr. Ahlberg Yohe comes to the MIA from Saint Louis Art Museum, where she has been Assistant Curator of Native American Art since 2013 and Mellon Fellow since 2011. She assumes her position on August 4, 2014, and will report to Jan-Lodewijk Grootaers, Curator of African Art and Head of AAA. Dr. Ahlberg Yohe replaces Joe Horse-Capture, former Associate Curator of Native American Art, who left the MIA in May 2013 for the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Ahlberg Yohe received her PhD in Cultural Anthropology from the University of New Mexico. Her dissertation, entitled The Social Life of Weaving in Contemporary Navajo Life, is based on four years of ethnographic fieldwork with Navajo weavers and community members.
“I look forward to working with Jill as she builds upon our strong collection of Native American Art and creates new and dynamic programs and exhibitions for museum visitors,” said Jan-Lodewijk Grootaers. “She comes to the MIA with a strong commitment to community outreach and excellent academic credentials.”
Prior to working at Saint Louis Art Museum, Dr. Ahlberg Yohe was a Visiting Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, PA. She has published essays in the area of Native American culture and anthropology that include: The Circulation and Silence of Weaving Knowledge in Contemporary Navajo Life, and The Social Role of Weaving in Contemporary Navajo Life.
Dr. Ahlberg Yohe co-curated the current exhibition “Mother Earth, Father Sky: Textiles from the Navajo World,” currently on view at Saint Louis Art Museum. She led the reinstallation of galleries devoted to holdings of art by Native American artists from the Great Plains, Northwest Coast, and Arctic.
In 2012 Dr. Ahlberg Yohe co-organized a Navajo weaving symposium and was organizer for roundtable discussions and symposia on the topics of Navajo Studies and Indigenous Issues. She has been awarded multiple grants for research and study from 2001 to present and is currently completing writing and research for the Donald Danforth Collection, of the Saint Louis Art Museum, on art of the Great Plains.