KATONAH, N.Y. – Michael Gitlitz has been appointed as the new executive director of the Katonah Museum of Art.
Gitlitz has more than 25 years of experience in the art world at Hirschl & Adler Galleries, Hirschl & Adler Modern, Marlborough Gallery and Paddle8. His roots in northern Westchester, where he has lived for many years, has fostered a deep appreciation for the museum’s identity and audience, said Deborah Mullin, president of the Board of Directors.
“We are thrilled to welcome Michael who has the perfect expertise, energy and professional background for the Katonah Museum of Art,” she said. “His experience and vision will support the KMA’s mission to promote the visual arts to our diverse community. He appreciates the value of the KMA as a cultural center for art and creative thinking. We are confident that Michael’s leadership style will resonate in the community and beyond. He is committed to strengthening ties with our neighbors and with our wider artistic community.”
Gitlitz said the Katonah Museum of Art is a “unique institution with an extraordinary legacy of offering world-class art exhibitions while also serving as an intimate nexus for community engagement. My family lives not far from the museum and we have always thought of the KMA as a great asset to the area. I am thrilled to be able to work with such a talented and committed staff, board and group of advisors and volunteers.”
Gitlitz earned a bachelor’s degree from Oberlin College in 1991, including studies at the Scuola Lorenzo de Medici and Scuola Dante Alighieri in Florence, Italy, the Middlebury College Language Schools in Middlebury, Vt., and University College, London. In 1992, Gitlitz received a post-graduate diploma in the fine and decorative arts from Sotheby’s Institute, London. From 1993 to 2001, he handled American and European works of art from the 17th to the 21st centuries for Hirschl & Adler Galleries’ international clientele of private collectors, dealers and public institutions. While there, he curated and wrote catalogs for numerous exhibitions, while unearthing both old and new masterworks as well as artists’ estates.
In 2001 he was named director of Hirschl & Adler Modern and from 2001 to 2015 he was a director at Marlborough Gallery, New York, where he specialized in contemporary and modern art working with museums and private collectors as well as continuing to curate and lecture. From 2016 to 2017, he served as a senior specialist in post-war and contemporary and in modern art at Paddle8 auction house, exploring the burgeoning areas of emerging artists and online collecting. He has also worked privately consulting with collectors in all areas of fine art.
Gitlitz succeeds Darsie Alexander, who was executive director of the Katonah Museum of Art from 2014 through early 2018. Alexander was recently named chief curator of The Jewish Museum in New York City.
In addition to its visual arts program, the Katonah Museum of Arts hosts lectures, workshops, trips, and concerts.
The museum is located at 134 Jay St. in Katonah. Museum hours are: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and noon-5 p.m. Sunday. It is closed Monday. General admission is $10 for adults, and $5 for seniors and students. Members and children under the age of 12 always enter free. For more information, call 914-232-9555 or visit katonahmuseum.org.