Around the MAG

Around the MAG

What’s New

Welcome to Around the MAG, the Memorial Art Gallery’s online magazine. Check this site frequently for breaking news, feature articles and special offers.

Black History Month Family Day

At this year’s Black History Month celebration on February 22, 550 visitors braved the Rochester winter and enjoyed a range of activities at MAG.

Black History Month Family Day activities 2015Top row, from left: Black Story Telling League of Rochester perform “Women Who Loved Them.” Carlos Merriweather as Frederick Douglass. Art by Brittany Williams. Avenue D Afro Latino Dance Group.

Bottom row: Tru Art Dance Company. “Patterning Freedom: Creative Conversations with Artists” (Delores Jackson Radney, Gregory Rice and Brittany Williams). Finger knitting class. “Poetry Meets Fashion” showcase.

Photos by Brandon K. Vick.

It was a good weekend for…

Deborah McDell-HernandezDebora McDell-Hernandez, the Gallery’s coordinator of community programs and outreach, received double honors over the weekend of November 7 and 8—the Community Unification Award at the Latinos de Corazon Gran Gala and an Outstanding Service Award presented during the All Women Rock Award Celebration. Noted the Gran Gala program: “Debora has served on several community boards, but her work with the Memorial Art Gallery’s Family Days is what is most qualifying for this award. For nearly a decade, Debora has organized these events that have given a platform for people of any ethnicity and background to express their culture and share with others. She has brought people together to enjoy, appreciate and share their similarities and differences, creating unity through their diversity.”

Above right: McDell-Hernandez at a recent MAG Family Day. Photo by Brandon K. Vick.

MAG Awarded Federal Grant to Conserve Asian Miniatures

MAG is one of 196 not-for-profit organizations nationwide selected to receive a Museums for America award from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The highly competitive, $24,085 award will be used to conserve 22 high-quality miniature paintings from the Gallery’s Asian art collection. Read the whole story

Indian print ca. 1820

Pictured: Priests Worshipping the Image of Shri Nathaji (India,
ca. 1820). Gift of Helen H. Reiff in memory of Robert F. Reiff.

jonathan-binstock-july2014TJonathan Binstock Named
Memorial Art Gallery Director

Jonathan Binstock has been named the Mary W. and Donald R. Clark Director of the MAG. Binstock comes to Rochester from New York City, where he was a senior vice president and senior advisor in modern and contemporary art for Citi Private Bank’s Art Advisory & Finance group. He brings more than a decade of curatorial work in major American museums including the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.


Binstock is the Gallery’s seventh director and succeeds Grant Holcomb, who retired this summer after nearly 29 years in the position. learn more

Right: Binstock (second from left) hit the ground running his first week at MAG. He’s shown greeting visitors to the Clothesline Festival along with Dan Burns, regional president of M&T Bank; Mary Koegel, president of the Gallery’s Board of Managers; and Joel Seligman, president of the University of Rochester.

Photos by Adam Fenster (top); Richard P. Wersinger (Clothesline).

Grant Holcomb Honored at Retirement Dinner

holcomb-retirement1Retiring director Grant Holcomb was the guest of honor at a May 21 dinner attended by nearly 300 members of the Director’s Circle and special guests. See more pictures Holcomb, the Mary W. and Donald R. Clark Director of the Memorial Art Gallery, has announced that he will step down August 31. He notes that after an eventful year-long celebration of the Gallery’s 100th anniversary and the successful opening of Centennial Sculpture Park, the timing is right for him, as well as for the Gallery and the University. Board of Managers President Jim Durfee is leading a search committee charged with identifying a successor. Read the press release Above: At the May 21 dinner, three MAG Board members—past president Andy Gallina, chair Teresa Mazzullo and president Jim Durfee—presented Holcomb with a book designed by another Board member, Kathy D’Amanda. It included reminiscences, humorous and serious, contributed by many of the guests. Photo by Brandon K. Vick. 

A “Win-Win” for the Gallery

susie-webOn January 1, Susan Daiss left her longtime position as director of education to accept a joint appointment between MAG and UR’s School of Medicine and Dentistry. As a senior associate at the medical school, Daiss’s academic responsibilities will include teaching, scholarship and administrative oversight of the visual arts courses in a new master’s program in medical humanities. At the Gallery, she will administer the program, along with other community health and wellness initiatives. Among them: Meet Me at the MAG, an ongoing collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association. “This is not a goodbye, but a new chapter for both Susie and the Gallery—a  perfect “win-win” on all fronts,” says director Grant Holcomb. In Daiss’s previous position as director of education, welcome another familiar face—Marlene Hamann-Whitmore, formerly curator of education for interpretation.

Welcome Creative Workshoppers!

filly-install-aroundmagMary Taylor’s engaging sculpture Filly was installed on October 28 in the Creative Workshop entry plaza. Fabricated of welded steel rods, the life size work is the gift of Marilynn Barron McDonald. The plaza, which opened in October as part of Centennial Sculpture Park, provides increased accessibility for students at the Gallery’s art school, as well as an inviting place to sit and stroll.

Centennial Sculpture Park Honored by RRCDC

2013 clothesline festival Kudos to MAG’s Centennial Sculpture Park, which has received the 2013 Reshaping Rochester Robert Macon Award for Innovation. The award, announced October 16 by the Rochester Regional Community Design Center, recognizes the new sculpture park for its positive impact on people, neighborhoods and the community. Learn more

Pictured: Visitors to the M&T Bank Clothesline Festival enjoying Centennial Sculpture Park. Photo by Richard P. Wersinger.