The Museum Curator: Vanessa

Vanessa Sikes was born in New York, New York and was raised by a family of art collectors. However, her interest in the arts had not peaked until she took an AP art history class in high school. She attended Eleanor Roosevelt High School as graduating Class 2008. Vanessa often frequented the Metropolitan Museum of Art as a volunteer – participating in the Weekend Guided Tours program since sophomore year of high school, followed by the Museum Department program before heading off to college. She studied at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts, graduating with a dual degree – an BS degree in the Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works and an BA degree in History of Art and Archaeology. After graduating college in 2014, she returned to the Metropolitan Museum of Fine Arts where she currently works as a museum curator, but hopes to eventually pursue a PhD, and to be a candidate for the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Curatorial Fellowship. In the meantime, Vanessa is learning the art of oil painting with ambitions to someday have her own works of art displayed in an exhibition like the pieces she curates in the museum. See her resume.

Vanessa's Artist Statement

“I, Vanessa Sikes, admired the works of museum curators as a child. Getting to work with artists and researching about their history makes one appreciate the thought and effort that goes into every piece before getting displayed in the museum. Artists would express their feelings, their thoughts, and their story through such a visual medium like painting or sculpture, and it is the job of the museum curator to compose a gallery that further conveys that artist’s message for the general public. Fortunately, with the advancements in technology, the interaction between the viewer and the art has elevated as it alludes to the possibility for experimental strides to be taken. It is the idea of knowing that I am contributing to the spread of beauty and history as I witness viewers accumulate a deeper appreciation and devote themselves to the visual arts.”

Vanessa Sikes was created by Studio Crew Artist Angela Faye Cruz. Learn more about Angela Faye’s work at AOB here.