Rick Kinsel Joins NYU’s Institute of Fine Arts’ Board of Trustees


Newswise — NYU’s Institute of Fine Arts is pleased to announce the appointment of Rick Kinsel to the Institute’s Board of Trustees. Kinsel brings to the Institute his vast experience in the corporate and nonprofit sectors, his broad global network, as well as his important work as a curator. 

Kinsel is the president of the Vilcek Foundation, an organization dedicated to raising awareness of immigrant contributions to the United States and to fostering appreciation of the arts and sciences. The Vilcek Foundation is the steward of the Vilcek Foundation Art Collections, with holdings in American Modernism, Native American pottery, Pre-Columbian objects, and more; it is also the facilitator of the Vilcek Foundation Prizes, recognizing notable immigrants in the arts and sciences such as Christo, Yo-Yo Ma, and Mikhail Baryshnikov. Kinsel has been with the foundation since its inception in 2000, conceptualizing and administering its philanthropic programs. 

Prior to joining the Vilcek Foundation, Kinsel served as director of cultural affairs for Coty Inc. in New York, supervising all arts and educational programs from 1997 to 2003, including building art collections for the company's offices in New York, Paris, London, and Moscow. He went on to oversee other key initiatives, including creating an annual design award; raising funds for student scholarships at Parsons School of Design in New York; and helping to establish an alliance with the National Air and Space Administration (NASA), whereby Coty developed personal care products to counter the dry atmosphere of the International Space Station.

Kinsel began his career at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 1989. There, as cataloguer in charge of acquisitions, he was responsible for accessioning all objects acquired by the museum, numbering over 4,000 per year.

During his tenure at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, he earned an M.A. in the History of the Decorative Arts, Design, and Culture from the Bard Graduate Center in New York. He completed undergraduate studies at Sinclair College in Dayton, Ohio, and at Ohio State University in Columbus. Kinsel also pursued non-degree coursework in museum studies at the L'Ecole du Louvre in Paris and in nonprofit management at Harvard Business School.

In 2013, Kinsel received the MAD Visionaries! Award from the Museum of Arts and Design for outstanding leadership and creativity in the arts, and he has served as a visual arts curator for Pen + Brush since 2015. He is a founding member of the Friends of Arms and Armor group at The Metropolitan Museum of Art; a member of the Collections Committee of the Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and in 2016, he was honored by the Theatre Communications Group at their annual gala for his work promoting diversity, inclusiveness, and equity in American theatre.

“It is an honor to welcome Rick to the Institute’s Board of Trustees. His wide-ranging experiences in philanthropy and the cultural sphere will make him a valuable member of our board. He will assist us in fulfilling our core mission to educate a more diverse and inclusive generation of scholars and curators, and to enhance our curatorial initiatives,” said Christine Poggi, Judy and Michael Steinhardt Director of the Institute of Fine Arts at NYU.

About the Institute of Fine Arts at NYU

Founded in 1932, the Institute of Fine Arts is a center of graduate training and research in art history, archaeology, and conservation. The Institute has a faculty unrivaled in the breadth and depth of its expertise and in the range of its adjunct lecturers from top museums, research institutes, and conservation studios. The Institute has conferred more than 2,700 degrees, and its alumni hold leadership roles as professors, curators, museum directors, archaeologists, conservators, critics, and institutional administrators throughout the U.S. and internationally.

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