Episode 71: Stephanie Stebich

Art Scoping

Jul 29 2021 • 30 mins

The Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) is the flagship museum for our nation’s art, and Stephanie Stebich, its Margaret and Terry Stent Director, has led it since 2017. We touch on the two new museums recently authorized by Congress that will join the Smithsonian’s other 19 museums, why SAAM successfully attracts a large number of repeat visitors, the importance of creating a sense of connection and community for museum visitors, balancing local audiences with those from far away, how governance works with the unique membership of the Smithsonian's Board of Regents, SAAM's deep collection of work by African American artists and a preview of two upcoming exhibitions drawn from this collection, changes to how museums do business as a result of the pandemic, how she has prepared for a new directorship, her views on deaccessioning, and much more.