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Asmaa Walton

ST. LOUIS, Aug. 1, 2019—Asmaa Walton has joined the Saint Louis Art Museum as the 2019-2020 Romare Bearden Graduate Museum Fellow. The fellowship aims to expand the number of under-represented professionals working in art-related fields in museums, galleries, non-profit organizations and universities.

Walton is a Detroit native with a master’s degree in Arts Politics from New York University and a bachelor of fine arts degree in Art Education from Michigan State University. These two programs merge her interests in community-based art education and the use of art as a catalyst for social change. Walton was the inaugural KeyBank Diversity Leadership Fellow at the Toledo Museum of Art.

Named for African-American artist Romare Bearden, the one-year paid fellowship is designed to prepare graduate students of color seeking careers as art historians and museum professionals. Fellows gain valuable hands-on experience working throughout the Art Museum on specific assignments tailored to their background and interests. Since the program’s inception in 1992, Bearden Fellows have spent their year teaching, researching works in the collection, developing programming, writing gallery materials and assisting curators with the development of exhibitions.

The Romare Bearden Minority Museum Fellowship is a critical component in the Art Museum’s long-established campaign to increase diversity among its professional staff, an effort that in 2015 was praised in The Economist. In 2017, the Walton Family Foundation and Ford Foundation announced they would fund efforts to sustain, evaluate and disseminate lessons from the program.

Past fellows have gone on to hold key positions at the Saint Louis Art Museum, as well as at other noteworthy museums and universities, including the Art Institute of Chicago, National Gallery of Art, National Portrait Gallery and University of Texas at Austin.

CONTACT: Matthew Hathaway, 314.655.5493, matthew.hathaway@slam.org

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