The Contemporary Austin gets a new executive director
Longtime arts executive Sharon Maidenberg has been named executive director and CEO of the Contemporary Austin, the museum announced Friday.
Maidenberg comes to the Contemporary Austin from Headlands Center for the Arts in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, north of San Francisco, where she had served as executive director since 2010. She will take up her post in Austin on Sept. 1, according to a news release, succeeding Louis Grachos, who left the museum in June.
Originally from the East Coast, Maidenberg has been a member of the Bay Area nonprofit arts community for the past 20 years, where she has worked with arts organizations such as Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Southern Exposure and New Langton Arts.
At Headlands, Maidenberg oversaw artist residencies, artist awards, exhibitions and public programs, including the launch of a thematic residency program, which brings artists and non-arts experts together to address various issues.
According to the Contemporary, she more than tripled Headlands’ budget, doubled its staff and oversaw creation of The Commons, an outdoor visitor and programmatic space.
“I am thrilled to take on my next professional opportunity in one of the country’s most dynamic and rapidly evolving cities,” Maidenberg said in a statement. “Like the Bay Area, Austin is one of the most innovative places in the country, and it’s clear that culture, community, and creativity are deeply valued. I am eager to become part of the rich arts ecosystem in Austin at this critical time in the world—a time when the arts can and should play an integral role in society.”