Curatorial and Conservation

Rita Albertson

Rita Albertson
George F. and Sybil H. Fuller Term Chair in Conservation and Chief Conservator

Rita Albertson was appointed Chief Conservator at the Worcester Art Museum in 2004. Prior to that she served as Paintings Conservator at WAM and Assistant Paintings Conservator at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. She oversees a conservation team of specialists in objects, paintings, works on paper, and arms and armor. In addition, she performs conservation treatments on WAM paintings and advocates for conservation and preservation of the Museum's permanent collection. Albertson has also co-curated exhibitions at WAM, including The Mystery of Worcester's Leonardo (2018), The Last Judgment Tapestry (2016), and—with the late Philip Klausmeyer—Portraits by William Hogarth (2014 – 2015). She received her M.S. in paintings conservation from the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation in 1982.

Nancy Kathryn Burns

Nancy Kathryn Burns
Stoddard Associate Curator of Prints, Drawings and Photographs

Nancy Burns joined the Worcester Art Museum as Assistant Curator of Prints, Drawings and Photographs in August 2012. Since then, she has organized or co-organized 11 exhibitions including Leisure, Pleasure, and the Debut of the Modern French Woman (2011), Winogrand's Women are Beautiful (2013), Cyanotypes: Photography's Blue Period (2016), Rediscovering an American Community of Color: Photographs of William Bullard (2017), and most recently Monet's Waterloo Bridge: Vision and Process (2019). Burns received her MA at Brown University with a focus on European art after 1850. Before joining the Museum, she was a lecturer in the history of art at The College of the Holy Cross and Clark University.

Erin R. Corrales-Diaz

Erin R. Corrales-Diaz
Assistant Curator of American Art

Erin Corrales-Diaz joined WAM in May 2018 as Assistant Curator of American Art, a position generously supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Before coming to Worcester, Corrales-Diaz held dual posts as Curator of the Johnson Collection and Visiting Scholar at Wofford and Converse Colleges in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Her curatorial projects at WAM have included overseeing a multi-year grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to conserve and display Edward Augustus Brackett's monumental marble sculpture group, Shipwrecked Mother and Child (1848-1851), and a project that examines luxury goods and consumption with WAM's colonial and federal decorative and fine arts. She is a specialist in nineteenth- and early twentieth-century American art with a particular focus on art of the American Civil War and African American art. Corrales-Diaz received her doctorate from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Jeffrey L. Forgeng

Jeffrey L. Forgeng
Higgins Curator of Arms & Armor and Medieval Art

Jeffrey Forgeng has curated the John Woodman Higgins Collection since 1999, first as the Paul S. Morgan Curator at the Higgins Armory Museum and, since 2014, as The Higgins Curator of Arms & Armor and Medieval Art at the Worcester Art Museum. His responsibilities at WAM entail integrating the Higgins collection of some 2,000 arms and armor objects throughout the Museum. This includes the reinstallation of the Medieval Galleries (2016), the addition of numerous armors in contextually related galleries (2017), and planning the permanent arms and armor gallery (estimated opening 2023). Forgeng is the author of over a dozen books, most recently The Medieval Art of Swordsmanship: Royal Armouries Manuscript I.33. Forgeng holds a PhD in Medieval Studies from the University of Toronto.

Vivian Li

Vivian Li
Associate Curator of Asian and Global Contemporary Art

A specialist in late imperial, modern, and contemporary art in China, Vivian Li has lectured and written widely on 20th-century Chinese art, as well as global post-1945 art. Before joining the Worcester Art Museum in 2015, she worked at the Dallas Museum of Art, the Guggenheim Museum, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH). Among Li's projects at WAM are: Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries' The Beauty of Tyranny, Reusable Universes: Shih Chieh Huang, Dangerous Liaisons Revisited: Art and Music Inspired by the Chinese Tang Court, Travels with Hiroshige, and the establishment of the Southeast Asia Artist-in-Residency program. Her focus includes highlighting the strengths of the Asian art collection and developing a diverse and meaningful exhibition program of Asian art from antiquity to the present day. She received her doctorate from the University of Michigan.

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