MFA curator Ronni Baer heads to Princeton

Baer will be the next Allen R. Adler, Class of 1967, Distinguished Curator and Lecturer at the university.

Ronni Baer.
Ronni Baer. –David L. Ryan / Globe Staff/file

The MFA’s Ronni Baer will be the next Allen R. Adler, Class of 1967, Distinguished Curator and Lecturer at Princeton University. Princeton University Art Museum’s director, James Steward, announced the news Tuesday.

“Ronni Baer is intellectually lively, an inspired scholar and has spent her career in support of the power of the original work of art,’’ Steward said in a statement. “Ronni will be a passionate teacher, curator, and scholar, and we’re delighted to welcome her to Princeton.’’

The curatorship was created to help establish and broaden the museum’s work with European art. The role also involves a teaching component and collaboration with Princeton’s department of art and archeology. On May 1, Baer will succeed John Elderfield, who is set to retire at the end of April.

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“I’m just excited to embark on this new adventure,’’ Baer, who began working as the MFA’s senior curator of European paintings in 2000, said by phone.

Throughout her career, Baer has curated or co-curated a variety of international exhibitions. Many of her projects have focused on or involved Dutch artists, including Rembrandt and M.C. Escher. Before joining the MFA, Baer worked at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Frick Collection, in New York, and other prominent galleries and museums.

“I’m happiest when I’m doing large exhibitions that contribute to scholarship, [and] while I was at the MFA I had the distinct pleasure of doing several of those shows,’’ Baer said, “And that’s what I will bring to Princeton . . . that kind of expertise and desire to use art to teach us more about the society that created it.’’

Lillian Brown

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