Graham W. J. Beal

Graham Beal, a native of Great Britain, was born in Stratford-on-Avon and grew up near Hastings on the south coast of England. He has degrees in English and art history from the University of Manchester and the Courtauld Institute of Art.

After commencing his museum career at Sheffield City Art Galleries, he moved to the United States in 1973, working for one year at the University of South Dakota before moving on to Washington University in St. Louis as Art Gallery Director.

In 1977, Beal became Curator at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, an institution renowned for its interdisciplinary approach to contemporary art. He subsequently became Chief Curator and worked there until 1983, when he returned to England to be the Director of the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts at the University of East Anglia until 1984. He returned to the U.S. to take the position of Chief Curator at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, which he left in 1989 to become Director of the Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha, Nebraska. In July 1996, he became the Director of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. In 1999 Beal joined the Detroit Institute of Arts, where he is the director, president, and CEO.

Beal has organized more than 40 exhibitions, many of which have toured nationally. His publications include books on the American paintings collection of the Detroit Institute of Arts, on contemporary British sculpture, and the artist Jim Dine, as well as articles in the monthly art journal Apollo. He has served on numerous art panels, was a member of the Federal Advisory Committee on International Exhibitions from 1991 to 1995, and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Association of Art Museum Directors and Chair of its Art Issues Committee from 2002-2004. He was elected to the Board of Trustees of the American Association of Museums on 2004.

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