Miki Garcia will join Arizona State University’s Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts as the new director of ASU Art Museum on Dec. 1. She has served as executive director and chief curator of Museum of Contemporary Art Santa Barbara since 2005.
“Miki is a great choice for ASU,” says Steven Tepper, ASU Herberger Institute dean. “She is a seasoned museum director with extensive experience growing her institution, building her board, securing investments and creating powerful programming.”
Under Garcia’s direction, MCASB grew from a grassroots alternative arts space to a financially sustainable, internationally recognized contemporary art museum. As chief curator, she oversaw curatorial and public strategies that received significant accolades from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Getty Foundation and the James Irvine Foundation, among others.
“One of my passions is reimagining the potential of art and museums to impact the lives of all people in the spirit of inclusivity, equity and diversity,” says Garcia. “I am fiercely committed to the future of the museum and the role of arts in society. I am so excited to join the Arizona State University Art Museum, a museum within one of the most innovative public research universities in the country dedicated to inclusion; advancing research and discovery of public value; and assuming fundamental responsibility for the economic, social, cultural and overall health of the communities it serves.”
Earlier in her arts career, Garcia was project coordinator at the Public Art Fund in New York City and curatorial associate at Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego. She has served as a curatorial representative to the Mexican Cultural Institute in Washington, D.C. on behalf of the Getty Foundation and has been a juror for the National Endowment for the Arts, Creative Capital Visual Arts Awards, Art Matters Foundation and more. She has a master’s in Art History from University of Texas, Austin and specializes in Latin American and Latinx Art.
Phoenix seemed like a natural fit to Garcia.
“It’s the fifth largest city in the United Sates, and it’s going to experience so much demographic growth and change in the next decade. I am thrilled to be a part of that,” says Garcia. “I think people across the country will be looking to Arizona in the next couple of years as a case study in change.”