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Mariët Westermann is vice president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, where she oversees the strategic grantmaking to research universities and institutes, museums, performing arts organizations, and diversity initiatives. Prior to taking up her position at the Foundation in 2010, she was provost and chief academic officer of New York University Abu Dhabi, having started the development of the campus in 2007. At NYU, she was also director and professor at the Institute of Fine Arts, after having served as associate director of research and academic programs at the Clark Art Institute in Massachusetts, and as assistant and associate professor at Rutgers University.
A historian of European art, she is the author of several books, including A Worldly Art: The Dutch Republic 1585-1718 (selected as a notable book of the year by New York Times critic John Russell), The Amusements of Jan Steen: Comic Painting in the 17th Century, and Rembrandt: Art and Ideas. She has edited several books of essays, including Anthropologies of Art, and co-authored, with Hilary Ballon, Art History and Its Publications in the Electronic Age. Collaborating frequently with museums, she wrote the Rijksmuseum Dossier: Johannes Vermeer and served as guest curator and catalogue editor of the exhibition Art and Home: Dutch Interiors in the Age of Rembrandt (Newark Museum and Denver Art Museum). Her current research concerns painting as a resource of European culture, and the Garden of Eden in the imagination of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
Dr. Westermann has served as reviews editor of The Art Bulletin, trustee of ARTstor, and member of the visiting committees on Education, European Paintings, and the Watson Library at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; she is currently a trustee of MASS MoCA and of the Little Red School House and Elizabeth Irwin High School. She earned a B.A. in history, magna cum laude, at Williams College, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in art history at NYU’s Institute of Fine Arts.
Dr. Westermann and her husband Charles Pardoe have four children, and live in New York City.