Dr. Tianlong Jiao to Join Denver Art Museum as New Joseph de Heer Curator of Asian Art

The Denver Art Museum (DAM) is pleased to announce Tianlong Jiao as its new Joseph de Heer Curator of Asian Art, concluding an international search. With more than 10 years of museum experience in a leadership role, Tianlong joins the DAM from the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco where he served as the department head and curator of Chinese art. Tianlong will oversee the museum’s Asian art collection, which includes objects from China, India, Japan, Korea, Southeast Asia, Southwest Asia, Tibet and Nepal, as well as continue the museum’s commitment to bringing world-class special exhibitions to Denver.

Dr. Tianlong Jiao was named as the Joseph de Heer curator of Asian art at DAM, and joins the staff in September 2015.

“Tianlong is an energetic and ambitious curator whose expertise and extensive connections in Asia will prove to be an invaluable asset to the museum and our public programs,” said Christoph Heinrich, Frederick and Jan Mayer Director of the DAM. “The scholarly depth of his experience with Asian art is impressive, and he will bring a new lens to our Pan Asian collection.”

Over the past decade, Tianlong has curated six international traveling exhibitions presenting jades, sculptures, textiles, photography, painting, maps and ceramics from China and the Pacific Rim. Holding a Ph.D. in Archaeology from Harvard University, a Master of Arts degree from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Beijing University, Tianlong has built his career on presenting the stories behind objects, and the seamless connection between art and artifact.

“It is my great honor to join the Denver Art Museum!” said Tianlong Jiao. “With an impressive collection of both ancient and contemporary arts across Asia, the Denver Art Museum has a great history in presenting Asia’s arts and cultures. I am very excited to join this dynamic institution and look forward to contributing to its future programs.”

During his time at the Asian Art Museum, Tianlong spearheaded the renovation of the Chinese galleries and curated international traveling exhibitions from the National Palace Museum in Taipei and the Nanjing Museum in China.

Previous roles include serving as the chief curator and chairman of the collection committee at the Hong Kong Maritime Museum in Hong Kong and the chairman of the Anthropology department at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii. At the Bishop Museum, Tianlong served as chairman of the Anthropology department where he oversaw a collection of more than one million objects and supervised anthropological research programs and outreach. His accomplishments at the Bishop Museum included a major renovation of a permanent gallery called the Pacific Hall, a visitor favorite. During this project, Tianlong worked to develop and implement a highly engaging way to present the culture and art of the Pacific people.

Outside of his curatorial work, he has written or co-authored six books and more than 70 academic papers, in English and Chinese, organized three international conferences and chaired many panels at national and international conferences and lectured at universities in the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan and China.

Tianlong will join the Denver Art Museum staff in September 2015.

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The Denver Art Museum is an educational, nonprofit resource that sparks creative thinking and expression through transformative experiences with art. Its holdings reflect the city and region—and provide invaluable ways for the community to learn about cultures from around the world. Metro citizens support the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD), a unique funding source serving hundreds of metro Denver arts, culture and scientific organizations. For museum information, call 720-865-5000 or visit www.denverartmuseum.org.