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Julia Marciari-Alexander '85

Julia Marciari-Alexander ’85 is the Executive Director of the Walters Art Museum, one of the leading art institutions in Baltimore.

The Walters Art Museum, which opened in 1934 after William and Henry Walters bequeathed 22,000 works to the city of Baltimore, has grown to include more than 30,000 pieces spanning from the 3rd millennium B.C. to the early 20th century. In 2006, the museum eliminated all admission fees through a government partnership with Baltimore City and County.

From 2008 to 2013, Julia was the deputy director for curatorial affairs at the San Diego Museum of Art. In this capacity, she served as the head of a three-member team that assumed the duties of the departing director while the San Diego Museum of Art was searching for a successor. Prior to her work in San Diego, Julia spent more than 10 years at the Yale Center for British Art as the assistant curator of paintings and sculpture.

After graduating from the Vivian Webb School, Julia received her bachelor's degree from Wellesley, then a PhD in art history from Yale University. She has remained an active alumna, serving as a reunion chair, class agent and member of Webb's Alumni Council. Julia was one of the first 34 students to attend the Vivian Webb School when it opened in 1981.

She delivered a speech at Vivian Webb School commencement in 2016. A video of her speech is included below. 

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  • About Art School

    In an expose of sorts, one pegged to the publication of Gary Alan Fine’s new book Talking Art (U of Chicago Press, 2018), Charlie Tyson explores the facts and fictions surrounding MFA programs in the visual arts in America. A review of Fine’s book finds that seven of the 10 most expensive higher-education institutions in the U.S. are, in fact, art schools. But is it worth it? Maybe, if you want to be a professional artist. Tyson’s article also notes that more than half of the top 250 best-selling American artists at auction have an MFA. Read more in The Chronicle of Higher Education.
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