La France chosen as new director of Owsley Museum at Ball State

Topics: College of Fine Arts, Administrative

February 3, 2014

Ball State University today announced that Robert G. La France, curator of pre-modern art at the Krannert Museum, University of Illinois, has been selected as the new director of the David Owsley Museum of Art.

La France, who takes the helm of the highly regarded Owsley Museum in July, replaces Peter Blume, who retired last year. La France will oversee all museum operations, including marketing, collection development, securing grants, coordinating exhibitions and assisting with fundraising.

“Dr. La France is a wonderful fit for the Owsley Museum here at Ball State,” said Robert Kvam, dean of the College of Fine Arts. “He comes from a first-rate academic museum, is an accomplished scholar specializing in the Italian Renaissance and is a language specialist who has a deep and abiding interest in the liberal and fine arts. He also has a wonderful vision for the growth and refinement of our Owsley Museum.”

La France earned his bachelor’s degree in art history from California State University, his master’s from Syracuse University and his doctoral degree from the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University. For the last seven years, he has served the Krannert Museum first as associate curator and then as curator of a permanent collection of more than 4,500 pre-modern art objects. He also has been an adjunct professor of languages and art history.

Previously, he was a research associate at the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and a fellow at the Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies at Villa I Tatti in Florence, Italy.

“I am thrilled to be appointed director of the David Owsley Museum of Art,” La France said. “The collection’s high quality and breadth have impressed me deeply. I am excited about the museum’s prospects and eager to begin working with staff, faculty and students in broadening the museum’s audience and advancing Ball State University’s reputation for excellence.”


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