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The Director

October Director’s Message

Screenshot from "Celebrate the Wadsworth"Screenshot from Celebrate the Wadsworth
Dear Friends,
Thank you to the more than 1,500 of you who tuned in to our first virtual gala which went live on Saturday, September 26. The evening’s many sponsors made possible not only this thoughtful and moving portrait of the Wadsworth and the difference the museum makes, but also powered forward a broad philanthropic effort to support our general operations. I am thrilled that we were able to engage so many of you. On behalf of the entire team at the Wadsworth, a heartfelt thank you to those who made a contribution and to those of you who will make a gift in the coming weeks. If you missed the gala, the recording is available to all. Watch itfrom anywhere, with family and friends as a way to reconnect with the Wadsworth–you’ll see familiar faces in our staff, and meet the special guests who captured much of the wonder and delight of our museum in their appearances.
Ali Banisadr (center) visited recently in preparation for his upcoming exhibition
Ali Banisadr (center) visited recently in preparation for his upcoming exhibition
While we continue to create ways for you to engage with the Wadsworth virtually, nothing is quite like experiencing art in person. Two new exhibitions open this month–Made in Connecticut: Celebrating 25 Years of the CT Art Trail (on view October 16) and Ali Banisadr / MATRIX 185 (on view October 23). Drawn mostly from the collections of the 22 Art Trail member institutions, the objects tell two kinds of Connecticut stories: creativity drawn from nature and ingenuity powered by Yankee imagination. Stop in to see the show and ask about the Art Trail Passport for access to all of the member institutions. Our next MATRIX project is Ali Banisadr in the artist’s first solo museum exhibition in the U.S. featuring his otherworldly paintings that riff on current events, different cultures, natural history, and visual precedents from across the history of art. Banisadr found inspiration in many works from the Wadsworth collection gathered in a video collage created by the artist, available outside the MATRIX gallery and online. Ali also prepared an audio playlist which will be available via These two digital-born components offer a window into his process and the touchstones he used in this most recent body of work.
For each of the past four weekends we’ve welcomed several hundred visitors in our first wave of reopening hours. Reserve tickets for your next visit today–admission is free through November 25, and later this month we’re expanding our hours through Friday evenings: beginning October 16 the museum will be open noon-8pm on Fridays, and noon-5pm Saturdays and Sundays. Stop in to experience art and reconnect with the museum. We’re here for you when you need a moment to rejuvenate, a safe place to spend time with family, or to feel a spark of inspiration.
Thomas J. Loughman
Director and CEO

A statement from Kimberly Kersey and Tom Loughman

June 3, 2020

Charly Palmer, I Am A Man, 2006. Acrylic on wood with mixed media. Collection of the Amistad Center for Art & Culture

Charly Palmer, I Am A Man, 2006. Acrylic on wood with mixed media. Collection of the Amistad Center for Art & Culture


A simple yet poignant statement – “I Am A Man.”

We find ourselves searching for words to adequately convey the emotion we feel as yet another name is added to the list of Black lives unjustly taken. There simply are none.

It is our hope that the rightful outrage over George Floyd’s death becomes a catalyst for the uncomfortable conversations and realizations that must be had for real social change to occur. Our institutions thrive when we lean in to our collective humanity and stand together to honor our differences. Through the power of art, we encourage expression and generate mutual understanding. We renew our resolve to be a place for community support, growth, and healing.

With eyes and hearts and arms wide open, we know society can do better. We must do better.


Kimberly Kersey Signature

Kimberly Kersey
Executive Director
The Amistad Center for Art & Culture

Tom Loughman Signature

Tom Loughman
Director & CEO
Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art