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Westchester Museum Names New Executive Director

Michael Gitlitz Photo Credit: Contributed/ Margaret Fox
Michael Gitlitz in front of Mark di Suvero’s sculpture called Yoga in the sculpture garden at Katonah Museum of Art. Photo Credit: Contributed/ Margaret Fox
Katonah Museum of Art has hired a new executive director. Photo Credit: Contributed/ Margaret Fox

Michael Gitlitz of North Salem has been named the new executive director of the Katonah Museum of Art.

KMA Board President Deborah Mullin and Board of Trustees announced Gitlitz' appointment.

With more than 25 years in the art world at Hirschl & Adler Galleries, Hirschl & Adler Modern, Marlborough Gallery and Paddle8, Gitlitz brings an encyclopedic knowledge of art as well as a broad network of artists, curators and collectors to the museum, according to the board's press statement.

Gitlitz' roots in northern Westchester, where he has lived for many years, have fostered a deep appreciation for the KMA’s identity and audience, the board said.

Gitlitz also serves as a Boy Scout Assistant Scoutmaster, on the board of trustees of his local temple, is an alpine ski race coach and volunteers at his local food pantry. His wife, Rita Landman, is a local doctor. They have two children.

Mullin said: “We are thrilled to welcome Michael who has the perfect expertise, energy and professional background for the Katonah Museum of Art. His experience and vision will support the KMA’s mission to promote the visual arts to our diverse community. He appreciates the value of the KMA as a cultural center for art and creative thinking."

Gitlitz said: “The KMA is a unique institution with an extraordinary legacy of offering world-class art exhibitions while also serving as an intimate nexus for community engagement. My family lives not far from the museum and we have always thought of the KMA as a great asset to the area. I am thrilled to be able to work with such a talented and committed staff, board and group of advisors and volunteers.”

Gitlitz received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Oberlin College in 1991 including studies at the Scuola Lorenzo de Medici and Scuola Dante Alighieri in Florence, Italy; the Middlebury College Language Schools in Middlebury, VT; and University College in London.

In 1992, Gitlitz received a post-Graduate Diploma in the Fine and Decorative Arts from Sotheby’s Institute, London. From 1993 to 2001, he handled American and European works of art from the 17th to the 21st centuries for Hirschl & Adler Galleries’ international clientele of private collectors, dealers and public institutions.

In 2001, Gitlitz was named director of Hirschl & Adler Modern and from 2001 to 2015 he was a director at Marlborough Gallery in New York where he specialized in contemporary and modern art working with museums and private collectors as well as continuing to curate and lecture.

From 2016 to 2017, Gitlitz served as a senior specialist at Paddle8 auction house, exploring the burgeoning areas of emerging artists and on-line collecting.

Gitlitz succeeds Darsie Alexander, who was the museum's executive director from 2014 through early 2018. Alexander recently was hired as chief curator of The Jewish Museum in New York City.

The Museum is located at 134 Jay St. in Katonah.

For more details, call (914) 232-9555 or click here: www.katonahmuseum.org

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