Stephen Deuchar appointed Director of The Art Fund

  • 24 June 2009

Independent charity The Art Fund today (Wednesday 24 June) announced the appointment of Dr Stephen Deuchar as its new Director. Currently the Director of Tate Britain and Chairman of the 2009 Turner Prize, Dr Deuchar will take up his post with The Art Fund on 4 January 2010.

David Verey, Chairman of The Art Fund, said: "Stephen Deuchar is passionate about art and artists, and in giving the public the opportunity to experience great art in all its forms – which has been The Art Fund’s charitable purpose for more than 100 years. It is wonderful that he will be joining The Art Fund as our new director.

"A great arts professional, Stephen Deuchar will bring a wealth of expertise and exceptional achievement to The Art Fund. We are all very excited for the future of The Art Fund under his forthcoming directorship."

Stephen Deuchar said: "I am simply thrilled to have been offered the opportunity to direct the UK’s leading art charity. Its vital support of art galleries and museums across the UK, and the role it plays in galvanising support for the visual arts in Britain, make it a truly exceptional organisation. I cannot wait to start work.

"I am very proud of my time at Tate Britain, and to have been entrusted with the task of being its founding director. I feel privileged to have worked alongside many inspirational colleagues, especially Nick Serota. But The Art Fund represents an important new chapter for me and an exhilarating challenge."

Dr Deuchar was appointed to the Tate in 1998 after 12 years as a curator and exhibitions director at the National Maritime Museum. He oversaw the creation of Tate Britain in 2000 at Millbank, home of the original Tate Gallery, and the opening of its Centenary Development galleries in 2001. Under his leadership Tate Britain has acquired an outstanding international reputation for the quality of its exhibitions, drawing 60% more visitors over the past eight years. He led the campaign to secure Rubens’s Sketch for the Banqueting House Ceiling last year, and worked closely with The Art Fund on the campaign to acquire Turner’s Blue Rigi in 2007. Dr Deuchar succeeds David Barrie who stepped down at the end of May after 17 years in the post.

Ends

Notes to editors

1. The Art Fund is the UK’s leading independent art charity. It offers grants of around £5m a year to help UK museums and galleries enrich their collections; campaigns on behalf of museums and their visitors; and promotes the enjoyment of art.

2. It is funded from private donations and has 80,000 members.

3. Since 1903 the charity has helped museums and galleries all over the UK secure 860,000 works of art for their collections.

4. As well as its regular grant-giving, current initiatives include: the sponsorship of The Art Fund Prize for museums and galleries; the Art Fund International scheme to build five regional collections of international contemporary art; and supporting the national tour of Anthony d’Offay’s collection of post-war and contemporary art, ARTIST ROOMS, to regional venues across the UK, following a grant of £1 million last year to help secure it for Tate and National Galleries of Scotland.

5. The Art Fund is a Registered Charity No. 209174

6. Dr Stephen Deuchar was educated at the universities of London and Yale. He has a strong interest in contemporary art as well as being a specialist in 18th century British art. His publications include Sporting art in eighteenth-century England: a social and political history (Yale University Press, 1988).